Observation: Turnagain

Location: Tincan

Route & General Observations

Toured to 2200′ to see how well the new snow was bonding, and to see if we could get an idea of how well the January 21 buried surface hoar and the mid-January facet-crust combo is adjusting to the new load.

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

Recent slab avalanche spotted lookers right of the uptrack on Seattle Ridge. Debris seen in channeled terrain on Seattle Ridge, mostly on the south end. No slabs spotted on the east side of the road. Significant warming was observed as soon as the sun came out at ~3 pm; wet loose slides were happening along steep road cuts as we were driving by. No parties we spoke to (5 or 6) observed any whumphing or shooting cracks in the Tincan Trees. We did not speak to any parties that traveled above treeline.

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

Snowed the entire day until ~3 pm when the clouds broke and the sun came out for a bit. Snow was 1"/hour at times, accumulating 3-4" by 3 pm. Wind was northerly light to moderate, temperatures were in the upper 20's.

Snow surface

3' of snow from Thursday / Friday. 3-4" of low density snow by 3 pm. Ski pen was knee deep in the morning, but it settled significantly during the day, and was down to only boot top by the afternoon. Boot pen was hip deep or greater. Some wind effect was observed on the surface of the new snow by the afternoon.


Dug a pit at 2126' on a southwest aspect, 26 degree slope. HS = 270 cm (>300 cm in places), test depth = 120 cm. CT14, CT25 at density changes in the 3' of new snow. A 2 cm layer of small facets was found below the new snow sitting on a 10 cm layer of wind slab. Below the wind slab is a 15 cm layer of loose, fist hard 1-2mm facets sitting on a stout melt freeze crust. CTN, ECTX on these layers. PST 35/100 END on the 2 cm layer of small facets.

Photos & Video
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