Heading up towards chair peak from source lake on south aspect observed surface host and a firm crust about half an inch thick. Seemed like frozen overnight from yesterdays warming. Most evident on exposed slopes from 3800 to 4200. Above 4200 we noticed a layer about 2 inches thick, no crust below. Seemed wind compacted but wasn’t sliding when we cut above the skin track and we’ll bonded.
We weren’t too worried about the new crust at that point, but figured that wind blown or falling snow would become an issue so paid extra attention to wind and snow fall which started picking up at around 12pm at 5000 feet.
Main thing I want to report is that on the north side of chair peak between 4800 and 5400 ft there was a lot of wind and moving snow, and snow fall from 12pm. Before descending, we noticed an abundance of wind affected snow. Seemed stable but we stuck to low angle slopes where we could. We didn’t notice any slides due to the wind affected snow - and had plenty of opportunities to trigger them on small steep sections - but the wind and snow started earlier than we thought so we changed our plan for the day and headed home wanting to avoid the northern slopes. Our skin tracks when we got back up top were very wind affected and degraded. We didn’t stop to take measurements of new wind loading, but it seemed like significant movement of snow had happened over an hour and half.
Also saw plenty of evidence of recent wet loose activity. Seemed like probably from yesterday, saw one that seemed large enough to bury someone by just uphill from the thumbtack on chair peak.