Overcast skies with gusty winds dominated the day. A few flurries fell from the sky at times and a few spots of blue even shined through the clouds.
No new avalanches were observed. The winds were easily transporting snow throughout the day and it was easy to tell when you found where it had been distributed. Cornices are not very exciting at this point but are starting to grow and were sensitive. At one point while walking through a meadow in a basin bottom, a slight whumpf may have occurred.
Variable is still the word in the Crystal area. The wind has redistributed the recent snow in a number of ways and there are areas that have been scoured down to the 1/30 melt-freeze crust. I jumped on some test slopes and kicked some wind rolls and was able to get some snow to move but didn't actually see any real avalanches today. The new snow is fairly low density and was able to run on the crust on steeper slopes when I got it moving. Below the surface I found a thick and bomber melt-freeze crust on slopes that had a southerly tilt. On slopes that are on the shadier end of the dial, it was a different story. A thinner melt-freeze crust was found anywhere from 14-35cm below the surface and was often breakable. In one location, I plunged right through this crust to a depth of 55cm when I stepped off my skis. Below the thin crust, weak snow overlaying other crusts was often found, setting up a poor snowpack structure for the future. This is not a problem yet, since the snow above is minimal and lacks a lot of cohesion, but will definitely be an area to watch moving forward.
The new snow has definitely helped improve travel conditions on skis.