Avalanche: Summit

Location: Summit Lake region to Moose Pass

Route & General Observations

Drove through the Summit Lake and Moose Pass area today before a short tour up to treeline on Colorado Mt – across from Lower Summit Lake. We saw several new wet loose avalanches from the road as well as one slab avalanche that was triggered by a wet loose either today or yesterday.

Avalanche Details
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Trigger NaturalRemote Trigger Unknown
Avalanche Type UnknownAspect Southeast
ElevationunknownSlope Angleunknown
Crown DepthunknownWidthunknown
Vertical Rununknown  
Avalanche Details

Along with many recent wet loose avalanches, we did see one slab that was triggered by a wet loose. This slab likely was triggered today, but possibly yesterday. This was on a SE aspect around 3,000' on Madson Mtn near Moose Pass. Photo attached.

Several old wind slabs from the NW outflow winds 2-4 days ago were seen. Photos of two of them are below. These had quite wide propagation that is indicative of weak layers underneath.

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

Very warm weather, melting of the surface snow, and recent wet loose avalanches on southerly aspects.

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

Sunny! A few high clouds here and there.
35-40 degree temps from the parking lot to around 2,000' - high point.
No wind in the area we traveled.

Snow surface

Variable surfaces. Anything facing south either had a sun crust or was still in the melt phase and wet/moist. Many areas have a wind crust or some degree of wind crusts/slabs. We had trouble finding soft snow on our descent in the lower meadows on Colorado.


We dug one quick pit to look at the layers under the surface. The snow depth was around 150cm (4-5') on a easterly aspect at 2,000'.
We found faceted snow of varying degrees of hardness under the top 8" or so of either most snow or wind effected snow. Looking at the wind slabs that were triggered several days ago by the winds, it is clear the facets in the mid or lower portion of the pack are weak.

Photos & Video
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