The strong inversion did not fully mix out during the day. It was 16 degrees when we left the parking lot and the temperature only got to 30 in the valley by the time we returned. Upper elevations were in the mid to high 30's.
Traveled from 2800ft to 6600ft in the Fortune Creek Drainage. We enjoyed the sunny skies and it felt like a spring day in early April. Travel was challenging in the forest and ski crampons were essential.
We found a generally strong snowpack that has settled into spring-like conditions with the ongoing freeze-thaw cycle. Below 5500ft under the tree canopy, a rough but supportable melt-freeze exists. Between 4500 and 5500ft, 2-4 inches of weak faceted snow and surface hoar rests on the crust in sheltered northern aspects. Above 5500ft, we found a mixed bag of surface conditions, seemingly dependent on only slight variations of exposure to sun and wind. Surfaces ranged from weak snow and surface hoar, a zipper crust on top of the weak snow, and sun softened melt-freeze crusts. The top 2-3 inches of the snow surface softened nicely in open terrain and allowed for pleasant corn skiing. Northern aspects above 6000ft had wind-affected surfaces that consisted of wind crusts, soft wind drifted snow, or scoured.
There was new wet loose avalanche activity of any significance. Rollerballs from rocks, cliffs, and cornices did not entrain additional snow and we could not get any snow to initiate a wet loose avalanche on steep test slopes.
HS 100cm @ 4500ft
HS 140-210 @ 6200ft