West Slopes South - South of I-90 to Columbia River
Jan. 9, 2016, 3 p.m. PST
Weather: Mostly overcast skis with brief sun breaks in the morning lead to increasing clouds and light snow in the later afternoon. with very mild temperature.
Snowpack: We observed SH on the surface survived most of the way through the day, but was mostly destroyed but the warm temps The newest melt freeze surface crust was 2-3 cm thick (P) and supportable in places as long as it wasn't too steep. Below the melt freeze crust was the Jan 3/4 storm snow that is still slightly upside, but still all 4F. That sat on the new years eve sun crust and below that was progressively more resistant layers. We preformed several snow profile tests and observed CTH Q2 down 18 cm x4, CTM Q2 down 17 all failing above the New years crust within the lower portion of the Jan 3/4 storm snow .
Area Description: Edith Creek Basin, East Face of Alta Vista, Paradise, Mt. Rainier Nt'l park.
Avalanches: We observed several recent D1 Loose Wet avalanches on steeper SE-S-SW faces most often starting from rocks, trees or other shallow areas. Despite the overcast skis we did still observed roller balls on SE aspects.
Observation by Ian Nicholson and Lizz Meder
Did you see any avalanches? No
Did you trigger any avalanches? No
Was anyone caught in an Avalanche? No