Observation: Turnagain

Location: Tin Can Common

Route & General Observations

We skinned up the common track today, leaving at about 1pm at temperatures of 36 degrees. Ice and snow had turned to water on the highway. Heavy low clouds/ fog in the valley. Below tree line had anywhere between 12-16 inches of fresh soft powder, and this thinned out to about 8 inches above tree line. We cleared the fog around tree line, and noticed two larger naturally released slides on the tin can common ridgeline (CFR) (pictured), as well as a number of wet looking cornice fall/ wet slide/ point release on the ridgeline going up towards Proper peak (pictured). There was zero wind, and beautiful sun above the clouds.

I dug a pit on a SW facing 30 degree slope in hippie bowl, just below the common summit at 3180 feet elevation. Snow depth 180 cm, and results ECTP7 @23cm. A shovel shear test on a 30x30cm column yielded immediate shearing at 23cm & 50cm (pictured). It again sheared easily at 110cm. A hand hardness test yielded a soft layer below 50cm. While digging the pit, I watched a wet slide cornice fall occur on the ridgeline going to proper.

Meeting some other skiers, they said they had a small slab pop off at similar aspect as common bowl, and while we watched skiers above consider the bowl, they gave it a “50/50.” they also said they peeked over the ridgeline on the common peak and said things were popping off all over.

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
Photos & Video
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