It was a drippy morning with snain/flurries that quickly dissipated. As we approached the top of the Kendall Slide path around 10:15, some blue sky was starting to pop out and the winds were calm.
Noticed plenty of rollerballs from the rain and initial warm-up Friday into Saturday. Around noon when we were exiting the field, we were kicking off rollerballs on any steep turn in the open and there were more rollerballs and treebombs than in the morning. Driving back to North Bend noticed that some of the highway paths had produced Wet Loose avalanches but wasn't able to accurately date them while driving.
Traveled up to the top of the Kendall Path today and found drier snow above ~4500'. Plenty of evidence near the top of Kendall trees of the wind moving snow around. Surfaces were textured and stiffened with some localized cracking when stomping around. I took a few minutes to dig and look at the Late January Crust and found it down 40cm from the surface. Compression tests resulted in some repeatable failures in the HST above the crust (down 8 and 16cm), and I was able to get failures on the crust itself, albeit not as repeatable. Extended column tests did not produce any propagation. Hand pits and quick shears as I traveled consistently failed at the base of the HST with moderate effort. The snow has definitely gained a lot of cohesion in the past few days and as we were leaving the field around noon the snow was noticeably wetter and thicker, which helped produce precursors to wet loose avalanches.