Observation: Turnagain

Location: Sunburst

Route & General Observations

I toured with a group of four other aspirant Av Pro 2 students and Big Don Sharaf (the man) from the Taylor Creek Parking Lot (Sunburst) to 3175′ on the NW Ridge of Sunburst (Peak 3812); we enjoyed favorable travel conditions and excellent skiing.

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?No
Collapsing (Whumphing)?Yes
Cracking (Shooting cracks)?No
Observer Comments

While gaining the NW Ridge we initiated a collapse at 2400' on a pillow wind feature of apx. 18 deg. slope angle.

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

We travelled under overcast and broken skies that precipitated light snowfall (S-1 to S1) transported by light gusting to moderate southwesterly winds, with temperatures ranging from 1C in the parking lot (1000') to -1.6C at our high point and pit site.

Snow surface

Our tour began on wet snow with no ice crust remnants, transitioned to moist snow on a MFcr 10-15cm down at 1200 feet, then moved to 5-15cm of variable height new snow on MFcr at 1600 feet and above; we observed decomposing PP and variable wind deposition on lee side features with wind feature height varying in size from 5-40 cms.


Hand shears, test slopes, and stability tests indicated moderate snowpack structure, high friction at PWLs, and low propagation potential, inferred from test results (ECTN8 on BSH 15cm from SS and ECTN25 on MFcr 65 cm from SS).

Photos & Video
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