VA Lakes - wind effected

SNOWPACK OBSERVATION
Submission Info
Forecaster
Friday, February 16, 2018 - 1:15pm
38° 2' 19.608" N, 119° 16' 53.724" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

Clear sky, not a could in sight today.  Calm winds except for light northerly gusts at ridgetops.  

Toured up canyon and up one of the north facing chutes on Black Mtn to the ridetop at 11,550', and back down.

No signs of any significant instabilities.  No signs of wet/loose on SE facing slopes across canyon, nothing but isolated spots of thin small plates of snow fracturing in couloir.  See attached pic of old bootback that is raised due to the strong winds.   

Hand pit and test pit dug at 10,350' in the canyon on a NE facing small slope (see attached picture of pit location, and video for test result).  Clean shear, with HARD force 20cm down.  Pencil hard wind slab ontop of 4finger DFs (decomposing and wind broken particles).  ECTP13 on this same interface just upslope.  33deg slope.  Air temp 3.5deg C at 11:45am.  

0-20cm:   Pencil wind slab

20-25cm: 4finger DFs

25-27cm: Knife+ melt/freeze crust

Total snow depth in this drift: 170cm.

Ridgetop (11,550'), 1:30pm, airtemp=-1deg C; light N wind.

95% of everything from the parking beyond has been heavily wind effected by the post frontal winds after Monday night's 2-3" of new snowfall.  Lots of firm conditions.  Crampons were farily essential going up the steep north facing chute.    

Snowpack photos: 
Snowpit videos (tests, etc): 

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