Sunday, January 12, 2014

Pilot Peak was having a wumpfing Day on 1/12/2014

Today was a day of many whumpfs at Pilot Peak! The fractures, cracks, collapses, and whumpfs were too numerous to count. We experienced them at many locations, all aspects and elevations, open or wooded slopes.

The many white lines are cracks of a full slope that fracture, and compressions of slab pieces formed ridgelets.
Stability test results clearly confirmed the unstable conditions;
  • CTEQ1(SC) 30 cm down and CTMQ1(SP) 55 cm down.
  • ECTPQ1(SC) 55 cm down.
  • PST20/100(END) 55 cm down.
  • PST10/100(ARR) 30 cm down.
Numerous crowns of small avalanches were observed, however we were never close to steep and larger slopes of Pilot's Peak.
Avi crown at South Aspect
Avi crown at North Aspect
No surface hoar layer was identified today. The 30-35 cm weak layer consisted of near surface facets above and below a very thin crust layer. The 55 cm buried weak layer consisted of well developed facets above a 0.5-1 cm thick decomposing crust. At elevations below 6600 feet there was a crust layer from Saturday buried 15 cm under last night new snow.

The skiing was quite good! We only skied slopes between 30-32 degrees in steepness. Early in the morning we tested few small inconsequential slopes with 35 degrees in steepness, and their slab displaced after failing, That was enough for us to be very diligent in the use of our sight-through inclinometer to verify slopes angles at the various slopes and gullies we skied.

As the day progressed it continue to snow, and the conditions  progressed from tight to waist deep snow. Coverage was excellent, and we were able to ski down to Summit Creek, at the first switchback at Mores Creek Summit north side with no problems.

Next a short video for the day. You will see Pedro enjoying the soft snow conditions, and some short captions of an ECT and PST tests. PAy close attention to the ECT sudden collapse, and PST full propagation.

The next map shows where the summit creek glades are located in the Pilot Peak East ridge. Once the Mores Creek Summit snotel shows more than 1 meter, the ski lines on this area open up. Be mindful that although most of the terrain at the Summit Creek glades is moderate, there are pockets of steeper terrain with avalanche potential. Here is a link to the SnowGeek trip planning tool for this location: Pilot Peak.
Today's short ski tour of Summit Creek Glades.