Today was a beautiful day to be out in the East-South. Winds were light and temperatures remained in the upper 20's at the near-by Green Lake snotel. South aspects received enough solar input to get moist and should have a thin crust after today.
On average we observed 30 cm (12 in) of new storm snow above 5000 ft. In test profiles, we found a favorable hardness profile of the upper snowpack due to the cooling trend through the storm. The new snow is low-density and generally lacks slab-like characteristics.
In snowpack test (shovel tilt and CT's) we received consistent easy failures on a mid-storm interface about 19 cm (7 in) below the snow surface.
The MLK crust remains a prominent marker in the upper snowpack and is generally 1-2' below the snow surface in this part of the East-South. We observed some near-crust facets (rounding facets) around this layer, but ECT's didn't show the ability to propagate on this weaker snow on slopes above 6000 ft on NW and NE aspects. I did get one sudden planar result on this layer with a compression test (CT14) 39 cm below the surface at 6700 ft on a NE aspect.
There was evidence of wind-drifted snow near ridgetop, but wind-drifted test slopes yielded minimal results with slope cuts and slabs appeared stubborn . Many folks were getting after it on large slopes near ridgetop that were clearly wind loaded and no slabs or signs signs of instability was observed.
It was one of those days when I thought instabilities would have been more pronounced, however, we found the opposite. We found great soft riding conditions and favorable, right-side-up snowpack structure. That being said, with bigger storms and more water weight, the MLK facet/crust layer will be worth keeping on our minds.