Sherwins - Conditions

Merkwood to the Perch
Submission Info
Wednesday, January 8, 2020 - 9:30am
Red Flags: 
37° 36' 14.9148" N, 118° 58' 45.0732" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

No surprises in the Sherwins this morning heading up the Perch thru the Merkwood trees.  Mostly blue skies with some thin high couds, and temps ~-5°C.  The morning started off breezy, but by 10am at the summit of the Perch only light southerly wind was felt.  Quite pleasant despite the -5°C air temp at 10am at 10,300'.  Like others have reported recently, conditions are very variable.  Wind effected in exposed areas, soft snow in protected areas.  Surface faceting is causing the surface crusts, whether they be melt-freeze or thin wind crusts, to deteriorate.  The surface faceting hasn't been enough to decompose thicker wind crusts however, and certainly not effect all the old ski / snowbaord / snow mobile tracks (which are often just as challenging to ride thru then the various wind effected crusts).  Lots of more prounounced faceted snow sourounding shallow rock and talus out crops, especially toward the final pitch below the perch.  Recent Shallow wind deposits / crusts fracture apart when stomped on, but no propogation more than a foot or two.  

Did come across one recently fallen tree across the skin track (see attached photo), reminding us that wind slabs aren't the only danger associated with high winds!  Overall ~0.5m snow depth in the sheltered trees.  

Dug a pit on a SE facing mellow slope at 8300' to check out the melt-freeze crust / facet layers.  See atached photo.  The upper crust with fist+ hard snow underneigth was the only thing that failed in compression tests.  No concern now, but add a dump of snow ontop it certainly would be.           

Snowpit or crown profile photo or graph: 
Snowpack photos: 
Weather Observations
Blowing Snow: 
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