Mammoth Area - Sherwins- snow conditions

Main avy path
Submission Info
Tuesday, March 10, 2020 - 1:30pm
Red Flags: 
37° 36' 22.302" N, 118° 59' 6.6264" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

It was quite warm mid-day Tuesday with temperatures hovering just above freezing up to 10000ft. The new snow from last Saturday measured 4-8cm on most NE aspects and really made for pleasant turns until you reached the lower bench of the Sherwin’s at around 9000ft. The new snow was turning to glue and was shearing off old snow surfaces in small wet sloughs in these lower elevations.  Coverage is getting more and more minimal, but I was able to find a slot of wind loaded snow at the top of the main avy path and then filtered into some NE facing trees which still provided soft surfaces, yet being incredibly faceted. Depth of snow is averaging 80-90cm of snow in the trees and I could easily punch my pole to the ground with no effort.

Although it was quite warm on the ridge, a stiff NE wind kept things cool and was blowing consistently in the 25-30mph range at 130pm. Looking to the north, the Lee Vining area section of the Crest was already completed obscured by the storm front and Ritter and Banner became completely enveloped by the time I descended around 200pm. The wet loose conditions near the bottom of the Sherwins was the only unstable snow I found today, and provided more knee hyper extension hazard than avalanche danger.

I also headed over to Rock Chute and took a peak. One could probably make a slightly exposed down climb through loose unstable rock to reach the snow, but surface conditions looked for the most part stripped with some loose rock scattered over parts of the chute. I decided to head back to the main avy path instead. There were lots of tracks throughout the Punta Bardini area and Mammoth Rock area, folks taking advantage of the refreshment of last Saturdays storm.

Snowpack photos: 
Weather Observations
Blowing Snow: 
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More detailed information about the weather: 
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