Recreational Observation

N/A, very close to parking lot, accessed by avoiding nearly all avalanche terrain.

Dec. 18, 2015, 12:30 p.m. PST

Weather: Sky: OVC, S2 Temp: air: -5C, Tsurf: -5C, T20:-1 Wind: Moderate winds, from the SW at 10-15 with strong gusts, light blowing snow. Snow level: 3,000 feet

Snowpack: Surface: precip particles (1mm) New Snow: 22cm Height Snow: 250+ cm Boot Pen of 60cm New rain crust observed at approximately 22 cm, providing a reactive sliding surface for the storm snow. Shovel tilt test yielded easy results, as well as many small sluffs under foot (skis) on slightly steeper slopes on this surface. Also substantial wind loading on east aspects, with scouring on ridge tops and some west aspects. This observation confirmed the suspected avalanche problems listed in the daily bulletin this morning, potential for storm and wind slabs. I was not, however, expecting to find a quite noticeable rain crust under the new snow.

Area Description: Mount Rainier National Park, Paradise area. East Face of Alta Vista, approx. 5750 feet. 30 degree ESE facing slope.

Avalanches: None observed. Many wind pillows, and hollow sounding snow.

Observation by Peter Ellis

Latitude: 46.777522

Longitude: -121.765594

Did you see any avalanches? No

Did you trigger any avalanches? No

Was anyone caught in an Avalanche? No