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Avalanche: Turnagain

Location: Seattle Ridge

Date:
Observer:
Route & General Observations

Rode mostly the Southerly side of Seattle Ridge and looked into the North side for any evidence of recent human triggered avalanches during today’s sunny power day.

Avalanche Details
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Trigger SnowmachinerAvalanche Type Soft Slab
Aspect WestElevation 3000ft
Slope AngleunknownCrown Depth 16in
Width 30ftVertical Run 40ft
Avalanche Details

Very small pockets of storm slabs 14-20" thick were failing on the Jan 21 buried surface hoar that is around 1cm is size.

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)?Yes
Cracking (Shooting cracks)?Yes
Observer Comments

Several small slabs seen in Seattle Creek drainage today. Cracking and collapsing felt as well, but slab was so soft that it was hard for avalanches to initiate. Several folks testing steep slopes without incident.

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

Sunny, calm and temps in the low 20'sF.

Snow surface

14-16" of new snow from 1/26 is still very soft (fist hard). There is small surface hoar growing on the surface.

Snowpack

Dug one pit to assess the storm snow interface at 2,400'. Buried surface hoar sits under the storm snow 14-16" deep and had mixed results in pit tests:
ECTP 21 Sudden Collapse
ECTN 17

The new snow is still quite soft and loose and not showing signs of wide propagation despite sitting on reactive buried surface hoar. It seems this is why most of the avalanches triggered today were just small pockets or sluffs. This could all change with wind and settling of the slab however.

Photos & Video
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