Frigid temperatures. Infrequent light gusts of E wind, no wind transport in any areas observed.
Jan 13, 2023
Big Chief Mtn- East Highlands Bowl
|D2||WS-Wet Slab||O-Old Snow||2ft||N-Natural||Report|
Saw a few older slab avalanches that may have run on the Jan 4th surface hoar during the MLK storm.
Very cold temperatures kept us moving all day and limited in-depth snowpack observations.
We found evidence of older wind effects and features from the past week. All wind-affected snow was unreactive. Extensive slope testing found only minimal sluffing on the steepst slopes (>45 degrees). Found plenty of frozen rollerballs and "chunder" from the Jan 25-26th warm-up.
Found near surface facets on most surfaces above 3,400ft. Surface hoar was observed in specific to isolated terrain including valley meadows and at ridge tops.
Below 3,400ft and under tree canopy, surfaces are a Knife hard ice crust which includes all precip since the MLK storm. Above this elevation, surfaces under canopy are softer though minimal previously dry snow remains above the MLK crust.
In open areas above 4,000ft, the MLK crust varied in depth from 17-26cm with elevation and aspect. I consistently found a thin layer of 4 Finger hard, rounding facets (0.5mm) immediately above the MLK crust. At 5,4000ft, E, the MLK crust was a matrix of 2 crusts with a thin weak layer sandwiched between them.