Observation: Turnagain

Location: Lynx Creek

Route & General Observations

We rode up Lynx creek to check out snow conditions as the current storm passes through. It was snowing heavily as we drove to the pass but tapered to light snow for the rest of the day. We avoided run out zones knowing the slopes above were being actively loaded. We did not get any concerning results in our snowpit that we dug at 1,500’. The surface snow was very light and unconsolidated so there was no slab sitting on top of the old surface. As this storm continues with more snow and wind overnight avalanche danger will increase as slabs form on top of the old snow interface.

Weather & Snow Characteristics
Please provide details to help us determine the weather and snowpack during the time this observation took place.

It was a storm riding day with light snow falling throughout the day and poor visibility. Temperatures were in the mid-20’s F and winds at our elevation were light from the southeast.

Snow surface

At 800’ there was about 8” of soft snow on top of a crust. At 1,300’ there was 1.5’ of soft snow on top of a crust that was 1-2” thick at that elevation.


We dug a pit at 1,500’ on a west facing aspect. We did not get any concerning results in our stability tests (CT1 – 5cm down, CT30 – 43cm down on a layer between President’s Day crusts, ECTX), but we did find some weak layers that we will continue to track as they get an increasing load. We found the surface hoar that was present on the surface on March 9 located about 1’ (25cm) down. In this location it is sandwiched between soft snow, but in many other locations it is sitting on a firm surface, which tends to make it more reactive. There were also some rounding facets located just over 1’ down (35cm) that we are tracking because we believe they were the culprit in the avalanche cycle that occurred during and after the storm on March 5. These weak layers could make the storm slabs from the current storm larger than normal and more sensitive to trigger.

Photos & Video
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