April 2, 2023
April 2, 2023
Barbara R Wanner | Key Observer
Zone or Region:
San Joaquin Ridge: Extreme Winds
Stability Rating: Fair
Confidence in Rating:
Stability Trend: Steady
Traversed from Mammoth to June Mountain via San Joaquin Ridge.
- The main thing that stood out on Saturday were the winds. The wind speeds were consistently much higher than forecast with steady 60 mph winds gusting higher at times.
- Widespread scouring of the ridge and big Sastrugi forming. Huge cornices at Deadman Pass were being scoured down and looked a bit smaller than last week.
- Mostly turbulent suspension of the snow rather than down slope deposition.
- I dug a pit in the NE aspect below the ridge at 10’000 ft to see if there were any crusts or crust- facet combos. Did not find any crusts or PWL in the upper 100 cm of the snowpack. 15 cm F PP, slightly rippled and soft, wind deposited snow made for pretty good skiing. Underneath I found 30 cm 4F DF over 50 cm 1F RGwp and 1F+ RGwp below that.
- NE aspect skiing quality: Variable snow surfaces, all wind affected. Ranging from soft rippled snow to almost supportable wind crust, to smooth and supportable wind crust with some nice wind buff on it.
- Solar aspects are covered with a mostly breakable MF crust, pretty textured, about 4 cm thick. With F soft faceting DF’s underneath. Some solar softening in places sheltered from the wind.
- I noticed a network of cracks that ran across the crust on the W and SW aspects. Nothing indicating instability. Just interesting.