Waterton Lakes National Park
crashtestwilliams , Wednesday 10th March, 2021 12:00PM
Very crusty in the AM. Some steeper sections were easier to boot pack, since we didn’t bring crampons. The snow was significantly better on shaded features. By mid day things were warming up more than expected. We dug a pit at 2240m, on an east aspect. Total snow depth there was 190cm. The snowpack seemed less stratified but with far more facets than before the Feb cold snap. Definitely some very thick rotten layers in there, especially deeper down. 3 hits from the shoulder produced a sudden planar failure, 90cm down, on a thick layer of facets. With the warming and and the small chance of producing a very large avalanche, we decided against dropping into the open bowl.
Snow conditions were: Crusty, Hard, Heavy, Powder, Wet, Wind affected. Weather conditions were: Sunny, Warm. We rode: Convex slopes, Dense trees, Mellow slopes, Open trees, Sunny slopes. We avoided: Steep slopes. Riding quality was ok.
Avalache Conditions: Rapid temperature rise to near zero degrees or wet surface snow.
With the sunshine It definitely felt warmer than forecasted by SpotWX. Maybe 2-3 degrees by the time we returned to the parking lot around 2:30