12/2/04 - Noticed very stable conditions on Powderhouse despite these unusually cold and dry Tahoe conditions. Of course Powderhouse is well protected from that brutal east wind that ripped up Carson Pass - creating several reported wind slabs that slid naturally on Red Lake Peak. Gimpy and I only noticed wind affected surface on the entry lip into the main bowl, just east of the summit. It was mostly just a crusty surface but did show some signs of a slab. We did not venture into the open and steeper sections of the bowl, instead we opted to stay in the sheltered trees where the snow was still very dry and light and.......$$$$.
If the temps don't warm up before this next storm moves in, watch the bonding closely. We both noticed some surface hoar crystalization on the skin up.
Skiing was great never the less.
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2004 12:37 pm Posts: 1866 Location: in between
Quick observation from 12/4/04 off the west side (backside) of Palisades at Kirkwood. On a west facing slope, about 25* slope, near the top with scattered trees. I noticed some cross loading. Dug down to hard pack layer about 10 inches. Saw a .5 inch crusty layer on top of hard pack, then about 9 inches of soft snow that had a little crust layer on top. Isolated a column and stepped hard on it with my vert on. Clean fracture down to the hard pack layer.
I didn't encounter any other instabilities. North face of Thunder Mtn. was hard pack and open west faces were crusting up but had some good stashes in protected areas (ie. trees). East facing was similiar to west facing.
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 4:26 pm Posts: 407 Location: S.F. Bay Area
Anyone out there with some new beta from over the weekend? I saw some dry powder point releases with that last bit of snow that fell on Friday. Nothing new on Saturday and Sunday, although there was some significant wind loading that went on overnight Saturday and into Sunday....
Anyway, played inbounds at Kirkwood and had a blast in the new snow. Backcountry should have been awesome...