Powder Happy, Surface Hoar Sad
northrockiesfieldteam , Tuesday 29th December, 2020 6:10PM
An interesting day up Allen Creek - we saw evidence of one large avalanche that we suspect had been triggered by a rider 2-3 days ago (Photo 3). This slab was 30-40cm deep. We found a weak layer of surface hoar in a snowpit down around that depth which may have played a factor in that slide, along with recent south west winds loading up a dense slab in that area. There was still evidence of the widespread avalanche cycle from 10 days ago which saw many avalanches slide on that surface hoar layer - but many of those fracture lines were getting covered up with new snow. We felt the greatest danger out there now is on steep slopes at tree line and below that haven't seen a lot of traffic or previously slid in the last avalanche cycle - which unfortunately may also be where the best riding is! We made conservative terrain choices today and still found some great pockets of fresh powder to ride in. Unfortunately, we noticed a widespread new weak layer of surface hoar is growing on the surface and we expect it to be super reactive when it gets buried by the next storm or two.
Snow conditions were: Hard, Powder. Weather conditions were: Cold, Cloudy. Riding quality was good.
Source: Avalanche Canada MIN