My ski partner and I approached the north side of Lane Peak via walking along the Wonderland trail from Longmire, intending to climb and ski one or more of the couloirs on the north side, time allowing. We arrived at the base at 10am, and decided to climb the Zipper (climber’s left of the two obvious couloirs from the apron)
Weather was sunny and solar radiation was noticeably strong. The majority of the climbing route was in shade, and we did not observe any signs of wet activity (rollerballs, snow falling off trees, any recent debris in either of the couloirs) as we prepared to climb and as we bootpacked up the apron.
At 11:00 am at 5200’, shortly before entering the narrower section of the couloir, small loose debris came down the couloir runnel - followed almost immediately by a ~D1.5-2 loose avalanche. We both self-arrested on the side of the runnel and were not caught. ~30 seconds after the first slide, a second slide flushed the couloir. The bed surface went down to the underlying crust (see photo). We quickly re-assessed and down climbed to a safe spot, where we skied out our ascent route.
We could not see the start zone of the avalanche we observed - it seems likely to have started at the top of the couloir, likely from the solar input from the south/east. The looker’s right couloir (The Fly) had not visibly slid since the new snow, though there was obvious shallow-buried debris in it. Debris from multiple wet loose slides (Some larger than D2) was noticeable in the apron, most of it was covered by fresh snow and looked older. The slide we observed was the only avalanche activity we directly observed during the day
Hand pit: N 4600 ft. ~3" dry light snow on a firm crust.
Hand pit: N, 5100' below the zipper: 6-8" dry light snow on a firm crust.