Ice & avi - King Creek

Grant P

**Spindrift avi activity around 1pm to 3 pm. See avi tab. **Magic Touch could be gettong thicker. Was also forming over on the left side but didnt look close enough to see if it reachrd the anchor. **Main flow had two topes and a class occupying it. Ice described as under tension and explosive. **Right Cave Flow is a skinny pillar but coming along. **Left Cave Flow is also coming along but looking chandeliered on the steeper part. ** Gully Flow is in nice shape. Despite being hard brittle ice there are some good tool swings. Right side has a fairly deep groove. Left side has some steeper ice leading to a similar deep groove. The ice on the upper part before the angle kicks back got interesting and looks like it was wet until fairly recently. The last fee metres to the anchor chain/log was low angle and brittle ice. Off to the right provided softer wet ice. **On a couple occasions I had hard to start screws that before the threads got to biting, they would break the starter thread and leave me trying to start a new thread in a 1cm deep hole. This happened with a 13cm screw and maybe had to so with a little wrist wobble. 16cm screws seemed to be less prone to this as easier to keep steady in the brittle ice. Ice was deep enough for 16's most of the way but a couple were squeaky or hard to turn. Most had reasonable stances to place.

Weather conditions were: Cold, Windy.

Weather

**On the drive down Hwy 40 there were intense winds and drifting snow reducing visibility near the casino. Once down at King Creek winds were much less with minimal blowing snow. **Sunny breaks in the morning seemed to change to mostly overcast. **Temps seemed cold rising to around -15c by the time we returned to the car around 4pm.

Avalanche

**Between approx 1pm and 3pm there were a number of releases of spindrift avalanches in multiple spots. Observed were a few to the left of the Gully Flow. Most looked to be originating in trees and were size 0.5 but at least one had enough volume to partially bury someone below. One originated on rock slabs where estimated 10cm had accumulated before a point release entrained more snow below. **The other party observed a slide in the drainage just left of the Maun Flow that came from quite high and had enough volume it would have knocked a climber off. **The gullies you cross on the approach had snow in them and signs of pin wheeling when we went in around 11am. When we left around 4pm one of the south facing gullies had released quite high and slid to the bottom on the gully but not reached the trail. Approx 10cm deep ans exposed ground scree. Another gully had increased pin wheeling. Most were still loaded. **Around 1pm to 3pm seemed to be the warmer part of the day. While some may have had additional wind loading trigger them, a brief period of sun may have triggered the south aspect slide. Most likely had facetting and point releases. **Beware those approach gullies in the next couple days as I suspect more will release.