Moderate winds from the South & West have transported new snow across the BWRA. Aspects facing North through Southeast have accumulated wind-driven snow & have formed tender slabs. These slabs carry the potential avalanche hazard of being easily triggered by human travel. The cohesion of a wind slab allows for failure propagation, which means effecting a small portion of a slab can cause the entire layer to avalanche.
New snow is effected very quickly & easily by the sun. Solar radiation will melt & loosen snow across a landscape, but not uniformly. Take into account the location of the sun in regard to the slopes you ride, especially later in the day. Slopes that get higher angle & more prolonged sun exposure will have the greatest influence & should be approached with higher caution.
Wind-driven snow has beefed-up cornices all across the BWRA. Since this was the major contributing factor to the release of avalanches during our last storm cycle, id like to keep this component on peoples minds.
Around 1 foot of new snow fell during this recent storm. The storm came in warm & had a variety of precipitating snow forms including: stellars, graupel, & rimed particles. My pit was dug on a steep & wind sheltered area between Leavitt Creek & Road. We are working with a relatively "Right-Side-Up" snowpack which means; denser snow-grains are at the bottom & becoming less dense as you reach the surface. In most circumstances this means a more stable snowpack overall, but do not forget the variables & clues to pay attention to like new snow, wind loading & sun effects.
This snowpack summary applies only to backcountry areas in the Bridgeport Winter Recreation Area. Click here for a map of the area. This snowpack summary describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This snowpack summary expires in 48 hours unless otherwise noted. The information in this snowpack summary is provided by the USDA Forest Service who is solely responsible for its content.
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