Observation: Turnagain

Location: Tincan

Route & General Observations

Ascended the standard uptrack to the Tincan ridgeline¬†to look into the structure and surface conditions in the alpine, near Todd’s Run.

Red Flags
Red flags are simple visual clues that are a sign of potential avalanche danger. Please record any sign of red flags below.
Observer Comments

Old natural dry loose avalanches (sluffs) along the steep SW aspects of Eddies. Skier triggered long running, energetic sluffing from turns on steeper slopes. Sluffing was entraining snow on its descent.

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

1100 at Tincan pullout: 1 F, clear skies, calm winds, no precipitation
1215 at 2700': few clouds mixed with obscured skies and freezing fog, light southerly winds, light freezing fog
1330 at 3500': -2 F few clouds, light southerly winds, no precipitation
1430 at Tincan pullout: 7 F, few clouds, calm winds, no precipitation

Snow surface

4-5 inches of low density snow blankets the surface up to Common Bowl. This total includes ~1" that appears to have fallen last night. Above Common Bowl on the ridgeline the new snow has been scoured away in places and the surface hoar from around Jan. 21 is visible. Some wind effect seen on Northerly aspects around 3500'.


At ~2700' around 1.5' of snow sits on top of a stout melt freeze crust. This snow is around 4-5 inches of low density new snow and the remaining snow is old and faceted.

At ~3500' on a NE aspect we dug around 20' below ridgeline in a thinner, more scoured location. We found both of our layers of concern, the New Years BSH 14" below the surface and basal facets near the ground. We also found the Jan. 21 BSH around 3" below the surface. Test results: ECTN30 down 14" on New Years BSH. Utilizing shovel shear on the column after the ECT concluded, the column sheared across in a planar fashion under moderate force on basal facets sitting on top of a decomposing melt freeze crust.

Photos & Video
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