Compare this pit to the pit from 2/10/2009. My main concern with
this pit are the facets on top of the rain crust. If Turnagain
Pass ever gets a load like Girdwood did last weekend, then this
will be a very dangerous weak layer that will most likely be
responsible for many avalanches. This pit did show some signs of
improved stability compared to my pit from last week; HOWEVER,
that rain crust is still a major concern. All the ingredients
are there for dangerous avalanches once we get a heavier load on
top. I’m guessing about 3 feet of snow and/or 2 inches of water
will really tip the balance. There are spots out there were the
wind has built slabs deep enough to trigger this weak layer.
Don’t test your luck with these conditions.
Look at the photos of the “Money’s” to see this potential
avalanche concern in action. Those crown faces are at a similar
elevation to the bowls along Seattle Ridge. The results from
the “Money’s” concerns me because I think the Seattle Creek bowls
will have the same potential after the next storm or wind event.
Similarities to last week’s pit:
-I found the crust sandwich
-I found mixed facets and rounds on top and underneath the crusts
-The stability tests failed near the facets above the top crust
Differences from last weeks pit:
-The temperature gradient is competely different; so, the facets
above and below the crusts did not develop any more
-The crusts felt slightly weaker and more crumbly in this pit
compared to last week.
Don’t get complacent with this crust. Crusts are bad and are
responsible for lots of avalanche fatalities.