Bishop Creek - Bishop Bowl & Paiute Crags snow conditions

Bishop Bowl
Submission Info
Thursday, March 14, 2019 - 8:30pm
37° 14' 17.178" N, 118° 38' 6.864" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

Toured up Bishop Bowl and descended down  the S/SE rolling terrain from beneath the Paiute Crags. We skiied the big rock moraine features that terminate just west of the packstation at North Lake. Due South terrain provided pseudo corn skiing  and provided good turns around 1pm today from 12000' down. It was suprisingly dead calm and quite pleasent on the top of Bishop Bowl at noon. Did not observe any transport of snow today in the highcounty. The top 5cm of snow on the S aspect was wet with another 5cm of moist snowball making snow below that. Downward  in the snowpack was still wintery dry to moist dry snow. As fellow forecaster Steve related, we are in the transitional time of the year with snow residing in that "in between" time between winter and spring snowpack type. Did not observe any roller balling or significant wet activity at all on sunny aspects.

Northerly aspects in the Paiute Crags area looked to be severly wind affected and variable with that breakable crust look to them. Northeast textured snow  and the lower low angle easterly flanks of Bishop Bowl still had varying depths of  powdery snow residing on layers of windboard and the previous storm layers which look and feel to be consolidating and compressing under our warming conditions. While probing on the skin up, I repetitively felt hard boundaries between layers at 65, 90 and 160cm below the surface, but did not observe any instability in the top 60/65cm of the snowpack travelled.  Hand  shears did not produce any results of significance or interest in the upper snowpack. Observed one point release dry loose avalanches on northerly aspects from the Thompson Ridge that had looked to have slid in the previous few days. East aspects had 2cm thick melt/freeze crusts througout the area with cold snow still residing beneath, dont believe there was really a good window to try to ski East aspects today. With the heat today and calm winds I would have avoided travelling under cornices as this will be the change that could start loosening these features. 

Could not hit ground with a 200cm probe on the NE flank of Bishop Bowl at 11000ft. Found 160cm of very dense and consolidated snow right adjacent to the snow course marker by the packstation at N Lake (9300ft). I almost broke my probe going through this very firm and previously saturated snow in this meadow area.

Snowpack photos: 
Weather Observations
Blowing Snow: 
Air temperature: 
Above Freezing
Wind Speed: 
Air temperature trend: 
Wind Direction: 
More detailed information about the weather: 

Very calm to non existent winds today with warm temperatures at mid day.

32F @ 12,000ft @ 1230pm 

Clear bright skies

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