Toured up Ski Area to High Camp, then south to Miriam Creek overlook at PCT, just west of Gunsight. Open creeks and a 1cm rain crust exists below 5000'. Riming and cornice development at 6200'. Prevailing WNW winds, L-M. Temps: 36F @ 4500, 28F @ 6200. Weather break, with sunshine appearing just before noon, then closed and S-1 moved in while ceiling lowered at 1300hr. New snow feels heavy, sluggish but not saturated. Dug a test pit in Miriam Creek basin at ~6200' on ENE aspect (see image). Found the buried surface hoar layer via a Shovel Shear test. Easy pressure, somewhat resistant planar release (see image). Eyeballed 1mm rounded facets at 44cm depth from surface, located 5cm above 12/09 crust. Compression Test revealed similar results: CT13, Q2, 44cm deep at expected 1mm rounded facet weak layer.
Avoided higher N thru East bowls and ESE slopes >30deg due to evidence of wind loading and smooth pillows. Tried multiple small SE aspect cornice test slopes, only top 5-10cm moved.
Good day to go explore and find the weak layer and sun crusts that have been talked about.