Quiet snowpack

CBACCBAC Observations

Date of Observation: 04/03/2022
Name: Zach Guy

Zone: Northwest Mountains
Route Description: Mt. Axtell, northerly aspects to 11,800 ft.

Observed avalanche activity: No
Avalanches: Nothing recent
Weather: Light winds, no blowing snow. Overcast and obscured cloud cover. A pulse of moderate snowfall came through just after noon, otherwise minimal precip.
Snowpack: No signs of instability on steep terrain. About 6″ of settled storm snow from the past week above dry snow on north terrain and a 2″ meltfreeze crust on northeasterly left behind after last week’s warmup.
There was evidence of very light rain last night to about ~10,500ft and a dusting of snow higher up. We didn’t poke around on any proper above treeline terrain because visibility was too poor. Near treeline, the recent wind transport has eroded northerly terrain and reverse loaded the drifted snow onto the flat summit ridgeline facing south, where it got cooked yesterday. My biggest concern, which we didn’t find evidence of, would be a relatively small, lingering crossloaded wind slab somewhere in wind affected northerly terrain.
I dug one pit to test for persistent slab concerns in a wind-eroded north facing alpine slope, wondering about the potential to initiate/propagate a failure from a shallow spot. The answer was a hard no here. The dryspell weak layer is the same hardness as the overlying slab, and it produced no concerning results in tests (ECTX, PST100/100).