Avalanche: Summit

Location: Tenderfoot Ridge

Route & General Observations

Standard Tenderfoot uptrack to first knob above treeline (~2,500′). Observation is from Saturday, December 17.

Avalanche Details
If this is an avalanche observation, click yes below and fill in the form as best as you can. If people were involved, please provide details.
Trigger NaturalRemote Trigger0
Avalanche Type Soft SlabAspect West
Elevation 2500ftSlope Angle 36deg
Crown Depth 4inWidth 30ft
Vertical Run 150ft  
Avalanche Details

Numerous natural avalanches observed around Summit Lake - all on W-SW aspects and believed to have released sometime during the Dec. 15-16th storm. Bed surface was a 2mm crust that formed during the dry spell. This crust was observed on all aspects, at all elevations in advance of the storm.

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)?Yes
Observer Comments

Small, shallow, touchy wind slabs in obviously loaded areas.

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

Clearing skies throughout the day, calm winds. 30*F at the lodge in the morning, dropping to 20* by sunset.

Snow surface

4-6" unconsolidated powder (in leeward areas, localized soft wind slabs >1' deep were observed)


Melt-freeze grains on the ground giving way to facets, capped with the aforementioned 2mm crust, now topped with 4-8" new powder. The shallow snowpack here got pretty hosed with the dry spell. Snow depth quite variable - 4-6" near ridges, over 3' in protected areas lower down.

Photos & Video
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