Observation: Turnagain

Location: Tincan Alpine

Route & General Observations

We took the standard uptrack to our high point of 3,200’ and conducted instability tests, one at treeline and one above treeline, with results showing good stability overall.

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

No cracking, collapsing or releases.
As noted in previous observations, we saw crowns down valley near Tincan Peak and Kickstep (W facing), that was part of the recent wind/storm cycle.
Widespread cross-loading and scouring.

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

Broken in AM trending to Overcast
Light SE winds with moderate SE irregular gusts
No precipitation
29°F @1,000’ (11:00)
23°F @3,000’(13:30)
No riming observed

Snow surface

New snow ranged from 3-4" of low density stellars in wind sheltered areas to 2-3" above 2,500'.
Wind exposed surfaces varied, most notably above 2,300' ranged from soft wind ripples, smooth snow to thick, supportable wind compacted snow.
Ski/Boot Penetration: 4" / 15"


Our focus was to assess new storm snow and wind effect. Tests at both pit locations showed moderate strength and no propagation propensity with good stability overall.
Our first pit, 2,300’,SE Facing, HS 165cm, the 12.1 Melt-freeze crust was 65cm down. Tests: CT 11 SC on 2 mm facets above the 12.1 crust.
Our second pit (See Snowpilot), we received moderate and hard results on wind compacted layers 20cm down and again on a density interface with decomposing stellar, 35cm down.
I did not observe the rime crust as I have frequently been, in this location.
I was surprised to see the basal facets have a wide range of hardness and bonding, which may be due to water runnels on the ground surface.
On the flanks of my pit at 3,100’, I encountered a hard base, fully bonded to the bed surface, while the front walls were sugary and loosely bonded with the bed surface. The mid to lower snowpack seems very cohesive and is still not reactive within tests.

Photos & Video
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