All Powder, no Base

North Rockies

dave.mustang , Sunday 22nd November, 2020 5:30PM

Great early season riding in Bijoux today! We were in with an AST1 class and broke trail to the top. Looks like about 25 cm fresh since yesterday, and a total HS of 130-150+ cm in the trees on the ridge above and before the cabin. Very poor visibility with stormy, heavily snowing and low light. We remote triggered a small slide on a cornice (pics 2-3) and saw that it released in the new snow layers from the last two storm cycles. We dug a pit in the trees and found the same weaknesses although the snow especially the new snow, was much less slabby. We had easy failures on the 4th tap on both a tap test and an extended column test fail across the complete column. We saw two more layers down 40 and 75 cm react to compression tests but not propagate across in the extended column tests. Definitely watch for wind slabs at Treeline and in the Alpine for the next couple days until conditions get a chance to settle out a bit! We couldn’t see into the alpine at all. Temp at the highway was 0°, temp on top at midday was -4° (CTE4 SP dn 25, CTM11 dn 42 SP, CTH24 dn 75 RP. ECT4 dn 25 SP, ECT10 dn 42 NP, ECT 26 dn 75, NP)

Snow conditions were: Deep powder, Wind affected, Powder. Weather conditions were: Wet, Stormy, Warm. We rode: Mellow slopes, Dense trees, Open trees. We avoided: Alpine slopes. Riding quality was amazing.

Avalache Conditions: 30cm + of new snow, or significant drifitng, or rain in the last 48 hours. Slab avalanches today or yesterday. Whumpfing or drum-like sounds or shooting cracks.

Source: Avalanche Canada MIN