45F in shade on a north aspect at 5500' at noon. An inversion kept temperatures cooler in the valley bottom.
Wet loose avalanches had not begun by the time we descended at 1200pm. Snow was softening quickly on steep south-facing slopes, with 6 inches of boot penetration and 2 inches of ski penetration by the time we skied the south face. A few D1-D2 wet loose avalanches occurred in the last 2 days, mostly originating from very steep, rocky areas on southerly aspects. As soon as the slope angle reduced the snow was not nearly as soft. In all other areas the snowpack was firm, with no other avalanche concerns where we traveled.
Strong diurnal effect on steep SE and S-facing slopes, softening from about 10am. South-facing snow is fully transformed into spring corn. Change the aspect a bit, or reduce the slope angle and the snow isn't nearly as soft. When we skied the steep slope on the upper half of the south face about 2 inches had released, making for great corn skiing. As slope angles reduced towards the bottom, the snow was still firm.
We dug a pit on a N-facing slope near the top of Lichtenberg. The surface was a 3cm breakable crust. There were 3 knife- hard crusts present in the top 10cm, broken up by 4F layers. Beneath those layers were dry P/1F rounded grains down to the late January facet/crust sandwich at 94cm. The sandwich was still noticeable, however the faceted layer was 1F hard and well-transformed to rounds and was not a defined, consistent layer. Of note was a 2cm crust 20cm deep, and there was a thin line of 1F rounding faceted forms 64cm down (1cm thick).
The valley bottom at 3300ft remained cold and firm all day- although there was not a solid crust. A 3cm breakable crust with dry facets beneath was present. 5mm surface hoar was present in that location as well, but not seen anywhere else.
Jan 30, 2022 (FCsf)
Comments: Less sensitive than on 11th. Unreactive in AM, Not quite stubborn when descending at 12p. May've trended to stubborn-reactive. Tagging Late Jan to link profile to layer tracking