Earlier in the day in that area, I noticed serious wompfing on the crest of the ridge, so we chose to ski an aspect more protected slope. We were right on top of a feature known as 'stegosaurus rock,' and after looking at the open objective slope right off the top and noticing it was too steep for conditions we opted to skirt to the right and drop in lower in a more treed slope. The slope was north facing.
Feb. 6, 2017, 3:30 p.m. PST
Weather: About 20F, wind increasing, but didn't appear to be a factor. Close to 2 feet of snow had fallen in the previous 24 hours.
Snowpack: Nearly two feet of snow had fallen in the previous day. There was deep ski penetration - more than a foot. We didn't dig a full pit, but did pull a quick test slope and found the storm snow looked fairly stable. In hindsight, a full pit test likely would have revealed a bed surface or weak layer beneath the deep storm snow. The storm snow wasn't super light, but certainly wasn't heavy.
Area Description: Myself and two partners were touring out of the Scottish Lake High Camp yesterday afternoon up on McCue Ridge.
Avalanches: My two partners skied first through the trees. It was steep, but not open. I crossed over through some trees and triggered a small storm slab avalanche on a convexity. The first skier also skied over this, but didn't trigger anything. With my partners in speaking distance, but not within sight, and still in a steep zone - I didn't hang around to do a full observation. But it appeared to be about a 1.5-2 foot crown, 20-25 feet wide, running about 20-30 feet on a pretty darn smooth bed surface. I thankfully skied out of the very soft runout and found shelter behind a big tree, then checked on my partners. I wasn't trapped at all and everyone is safe, but wanted to report the instability. Happy to answer any more questions you might have. Thanks for all the work you do!
Observation by Mitch Pittman
Did you see any avalanches? Yes
Did you trigger any avalanches? Yes
Was anyone caught in an Avalanche? No