June Lake Area- Snowpack Conditions -White Wing

White Wing
Submission Info
Tuesday, December 15, 2020 - 7:00pm
White Wing 37° 44' 12.9552" N, 119° 1' 58.2276" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

We took a tour up to the ridge just south of Glass Creek and June Mountain ski area known as White Wing today under slightly broken skies and calm conditions. Snow in sheltered areas below tree line averaged 50-60cm and was fairly unconsolidated with about 25cm of faceting early season November snow underneath loose decomposing and wind broken precipitation particles 25-30cm in depth from the storms this past weekend. The NW side of the ridge was nearly completely stripped of snow from recent winds and was not skiable. The San Joaquin Ridge also looked pretty meager in regards to snow coverage at this point. Venturing on to the NE nose of White Wing, wind loaded areas adjacent to ridgeline had upwards of 135cm of snow with varying structure from some very firm old snow at the base to areas where the old November basal snow was completed faceted, loose and sugary. These deeper deposits only extended 100ft or so down from ridgeline before the snowpack got increasingly shallower. We dug two separate snow pits only about 30m away from each other at the same elevation (9500ft) and they showed different structure and layering of the snow. Variability in depth and structure across any slope is the name of the game right now. We didn’t encounter any signs of instability in regards to collapsing or shooting cracks. Thin to no coverage was the biggest hazard encountered.

Column and Extended Column tests did not show any unstable conditions on a NE aspect @ 9500ft, 25deg slope. Stability tests performed where there was a denser slab over weaker faceted snow did not show easy propensity for failure, but I imagine with the extreme variability there are areas where conditions are set up where you could trigger a persistent slab.

Snow coverage is pretty much nonexistent in the southern part of the forecast zone from Mammoth down to Bishop. It’s a frosting pretty much at this point.



Snowpit or crown profile photo or graph: 
Snowpack photos: 
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