Mammoth Area - Mammoth Crest- snow conditions

Mammoth Crest
Submission Info
Friday, January 10, 2020 - 12:30pm
Mammoth crest 37° 35' 53.088" N, 119° 1' 48.99" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

It was another superb day to be in the Sierra with mild temperatures and beautiful rich blue skies across the region. Yesterday afternoons brief squall left around 2cm of new snow on all aspects. The prevailing north wind really didn’t redistribute much of the new snow. The deepest deposition I found was on the backside or southwesterly side of the Mammoth Crest where there were up to 6cm of drifted snow within fairly thick white bark pine groves. The relatively warm day (33degF @ 1200pm at 10400ft) was already warming sunny aspects slightly and the new snow was bonding to the old snow surface. Amazing what just 2cm of snow can do for making the skiing more pleasurable.

There was a 30-35mph NE wind blowing on top of the Mammoth Crest up until 1230pm when I departed and the day felt warm with the above freezing temperatures. The northerly aspects have continued to be eroded and I was surprised at just how stripped the Hollywood chute was compared to when I last visited on Dec 28th. I could easily ski down on full coverage and the hardened wind slab on Dec 28th, but today’s conditions were drastically different with the chute being comprised of a maze of protruding rocks.  It was super variable, but where the old wind slab was completely gone, it left from 35-50cm of faceted 4F+ snow in the chute proper. As soon as I descended into the bowl and lower angle terrain, snow surfaces were not wind effected and was comprised of last night’s snowfall and near surface faceted snowpack that was quite soft.

I scoped the range looking for anything resembling an avalanche and did not see anything from Ritter & Banner to the Silver Divide and Mammoth Crest area. Conditions as far as stability seem to be pretty static with the main issue is that we are continuing to lose snowpack to the dreadful winds. I didn’t experience any sign of instability or fresh wind slab on all aspects in the alpine today.

Snowpack photos: 
-- placeholder --

ESAC receives significant financial support from ...