Field Day near White Rock Mountain

CB Avalanche Center2014-15 Observations

Name: Ian Havlick
Title: Field Day near White Rock Mountain
Location: Crested Butte Area
Date of Observation: 01/02/2015
Aspect: North East, East, South East, South, South West, West
Elevation: 9500-11000

Avalanches: Definitely felt like considerable danger in the area we travelled today. Cracking, booming collapses, and recent activity on anything steeper than 35ยบ was observed. Confident that if we travelled into steeper terrain, we would have produced size 1-2 avalanches.

Weather: clear, calm, cold. Not a breath of wind until around sunset, when plumes were observed off peaks near Schofield, and farther east toward Precarious and Castle Peaks.

Snowpack: Ventured into the more eastern forecast area near Brush creek to look at snowpack and get some eyes on the Snodgrass massif and some of the avalanche activity in that area from across the valley. Snow depths range from 50-150cm deep depending on elevation and aspect. Snowpack is quite weak, with 3mm dry depth hoar and facets through much of the snowpack, but slightly denser, stiffer snow overlies the Dec. 13th interface, creating that slab. Punchy and trap-doory while skiing up and down. Boot pen was to the ground, and ski pen varied from 10cm to full depth (~65cm). Felt several very large collapses while skiing on a variety of aspects. Many of which produced cracking on nearby rollovers and steeper slopes. 2 pits on different aspects and elevations produced propagating results where the slab was denser. ECTP17 SC and ECTP20 SC. The pit lower in elevation did not produce propagation, but failed at 14 taps at the december 13th interface, and 17 taps failed at the ground.