At 10 am precipitation and SSW winds ramped up. Any new snow that fell during my tour actively drifted.
I went out to track surfaces before the snowier regime.
I found a melt-freeze crust on most exposed slopes and some softer settled powder on shaded/sheltered (N-NE) aspects. Below 4500, shallow conditions exist with bare ground exposed on south aspects.
At 6200 ft on a NE aspect I observed an HS of 230 cm. I did find some near-surface facets sitting on a thin crust from 1/27, however weak snow sitting on the MLK crust was what really caught my eye. At this location the MLK crust was 45 cm down and had some 1 mm rounding-facets above and below the crust. I was able to get results in compression tests (CT25, RP), but it didn't show the ability to propagate in ECT's. That said, this will be a layer to continue to watch going forward on these more shaded, higher elevation aspects.
Overall, near-surface facets are not as widespread as I initially thought on this side. However, new snow will be falling on variety of slick crusts.