The persistent slab problem that we have is not a common one we see in the Eastern Sierra. Snow fell in November, and then sat around for nearly 2 months becoming weaker and weaker before 30-100” of new snow (4-8.5” of water) fell last week covering it up. Add to that a new thinner faceted weak layer that formed near the top of the old snow in some places just before this storm and the situation becomes even more complex. This top layer of facets seems more sensitive than the thicker older layer, and looks to be the culprit of the avalanche that was triggered on Punta Bardini on Saturday that could have killed the skier who triggered it. This is a situation where you could get lucky and ride over a dangerous slope unscathed that has a shallow sensitive trigger point, or you may hit that spot and get caught in a large avalanche. Its recommended to keep it reeled in for a while longer and give some more time for confidence to grow in this suspect snowpack.
Some may have noticed a change in the aspects of concern for this problem over the last couple of days, which is a result of the high level of uncertainty and the limited data we have especially on SE and W facing slopes. If you are out on one of these aspects, we would really appreciate hearing what you find with your shovel under all this new snow.