Cold and clear in the morning, warming up to close to freezing on solar aspects in the afternoon, with northerlies stayed well below. Sky cover increased from CLR to FEW, with winds trending steady at calm throughout the day in zones we travelled. While there was past wind transport, the cold temperatures in the past days and lack of wind today have left little factors to contribute to new wind transport.
Variable surface conditions abound, experiencing everything from a supportable melt freeze ice crust on east and north aspects — ski crampons proving helpful in travel here — to breakable sun crust on solar aspects. North aspects proved to have a mix of soft, light snow in the upper end of NTL, shifting more consistently to wind-pressed crusty surfaces as elevation decreased to 4000'. Past wind transport in the NTL was apparent, with snow heights on north aspects over our most recent crust varying between 35cm in wind buffed areas to 12cm in wind stripped areas. Ski pen varied on these northerly aspects, from 1cm on stiff wind board to close to 25cm in other softer-surfaced zones. Looking ahead, weak (2-4mm) surface hoar is developing over our most recent solar crust, which will be a layer to watch out for with future snow fall.
While past wind transport was evident and temperatures got above forecasted on solars, we found generally stable conditions agreeing with the current bulletin. Open creeks, variable ski quality, and firm surfaces where a slip and fall would prove injurious present a larger hazard at this time.