We went touring in the June Lake backcountry today, skiing off the summit of June Mtn by 9:30am. Descent down to the meadow was all firm, frozen and crusty, but the sun and temps were melting crusts and surface snow by 10am. We started out with ski crampons and needed them the entire way up Solar Bowl, with only a few centimeters of softening snow over firmer windboard and crusts. We chose to boot pack up an ENE facing chute to the ridge top, where a mixture of firm but edgeable windboard and soft facets overlayed with breakable crust started at around 10500ft. Boot crampons were necessary and ice axe was recommended. We topped out at 12:30pm and dropped back in by 1pm. Still edgeable but firm windboard turned into softer corn in the lower bowl, and made for a nice descent.
It was mostly a bluebird day, though some haze could be seen in the valley. Well above freezing temps at around 10000ft with near freezing temps at 11000 ft and no wind. A couple small loose rocks came down from the upper east facing chutes on our ascent, but no real sloughing or pinwheels were observed. Some globbing under the skins during our ascent in the a.m. as well as traversing back inbounds to June Mtn (I was glad I remembered my skin wax!)
We got a nice weather window to get into steeper chutes today, but this will probably change with the incoming weather and possible precip in the next couple days. Most likely chutes will return to slide for life conditions this weekend.