Observation: Turnagain

Location: Pete's North

Route & General Observations

Toured to 2126′ up the west aspect of Pete’s North. Travel through the alders and hemlocks was exciting! Very warm today, really noticed the effects of warming on the snow.

Red Flags
Red flags are simple visual clues that are a sign of potential avalanche danger. Please record any sign of red flags below.
Obvious signs of instability
Recent Avalanches?Yes
Collapsing (Whumphing)?No
Cracking (Shooting cracks)?No
Observer Comments

Small slab avalanche in channeled terrain above Bertha Creek, unable to get a photo due to low clouds. Wet loose avalanche on solar aspects.

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

Snowed about 2" until skies cleared at 3 pm. Wind was calm. WARM! 37 degrees at the truck at the end of our tour. The trees were dripping with melting snow. Snow was "glopping" badly on skins during the entire tour.

Snow surface

2" of new snow quickly turned into melt grains by 5pm. Solar aspects have a 1/2" - 2" melt-freeze crust sitting below the new snow. The snow since 3/9/18 is very moist and heavy.


The snowpack at the south end of Turnagain Pass is significantly thinner than at the north end near Tincan, about 1 meter less snow on average.

The snow since 3/9/18 has settled into a 1F+ hard slab sitting over numerous weak layers. We were able to find the January 21 BSH / facet layer, and found very loose, well developed 3mm facets sitting above and below a stout melt freeze crust about a meter below the surface. The entire snowpack is moist.

We dug pits in two locations:

Pit 1: 1325', NW aspect, 38 degree slope. HS = 155 cm. CT12 SP x 2, ECTX, PST 5/100 END, PST 15/100 END down 100 cm on 3mm loose facets.

Pit 2: 2126', NW aspect, 21 degree slope. HS = 210 cm. CT14 SC & CT17 SC, ECTP21 down 68 cm on January 21 BSH and facets. CT14, ECTX, PST 35/100 END down 90 cm on 1mm facets above a melt-freeze crust.

Photos & Video
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