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Recreational Observation

Observed skier appeared to approach on a ridgeline via road NF3550, and descended the slope to an unnamed road below in the pocket creek drainage.

March 17, 2019, noon PST

Weather: Winds calm, visibility unlimited, sky clear, temperature approximately 45 degrees Fahrenheit.

Snowpack: Thick ice crust on top of softer snow at our west facing location, approximately 1 mile from the northeast facing avalanche location

Area Description: Pocket Creek/Gunsight ridge area, east of highway 35 and slightly north of Mt Hood Meadows. The avalanche was observed on a steep Northeast facing slope, at approximately 4,700' elevation. Lat/Long coordinates: N45.296345 W121.605802

Avalanches: Two avalanches observed on the same slope. We did not see the actual slides occur, but we saw the untracked slope during our uphill touring, then saw that the slope had been skied and had slid while we were digging a pit for our own snow tests. Observations of first avalanche: Skier made 3 turns then the slide appeared to originate at the location of the 4th turn. Lower down the slope a track shows the apex of a completed turn, but the rest disappears into the slide path. Runout path was directly into a grove of trees. We saw no human activity or evidence of any other skier and became very concerned, but shortly thereafter observed a solo individual hiking up the bed surface of the avalanche with their skis on their back, apparently unharmed. To our complete surprise, about thirty minutes later we looked at the avalanche slope and saw that the skier had skied it again, and triggered a second avalanche at the same exact elevation where the first one released, only slightly more to the east. Again, we saw the individual boot packing up the hill on the bed of the first avalanche path, and they proceeded to ski the slope a third time, with no further slide activity. At this point we departed the area and could no longer observe the avalanche location.

Observation by Sarah Brown

Latitude: 45.330108

Longitude: -121.734033

Did you see any avalanches? Yes

Did you trigger any avalanches? No

Was anyone caught in an Avalanche? Yes