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Observation: Turnagain

Location: Seattle Ridge

Date:
Observer:
Route & General Observations

Rode up the common up-track to the weather station to work on the cameras and get another look at the mid-elevation snowpack.

Red Flags
Red flags are simple visual clues that are a sign of potential avalanche danger. Please record any sign of red flags below.
Observer Comments

One large whumpf at 2,000' near the snow pit.

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

Overcast skies with light to moderate NE winds. Just breezy enough to make it feel cold along the ridgeline.
Temperatures near 20F.
No precip.

Snow surface

Soft settled powder. Around 6-8" of new snow from yesterday 2/8 that was lightly blown into soft drifts in places.
Could feel old tracks underneath.

Snowpack

We dug one pit at 2,000', E facing, 15 degree slope. Snow depth 165cm (~5.5 feet). Two different failure layers in two tests within the same pit:
ECTP 28, 80cm down on facets that were around 10cm below the NYE crust
ECTP 25, 55cm down on buried surface hoar/facets (thought to be the 1/27 layer). Surface hoar (.5-.8mm) was generally laid down in pit wall and difficult to see.
Clean and planar failure in both these test results.

These tests point to multiple weak layers in the snowpack that range from around 2-3' below the surface. They appear to take a fair amount of force to initiate a failure, but one a failure occurs it propagates across the entire column.

Photos & Video
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