Weak Refreeze on Dunderberg

Location Name: 
Dunderberg - Virginia Lakes Ridge
Region: 
Other Area
Date and time of observation: 
Sat, 04/03/2021 - 12:00
Location Map: 


Red Flags: 
Rapid warming

Observation made by: Avalanche Specialist
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

Today we snowmobiled into Virginia Lakes and toured up to 11,600 ft on Virginia Lakes Ridge towards Dunderberg Peak. Skies were sunny and temperatures were quite warm. Winds were light near and below tree line, but up at ridge top above tree line we encountered strong southerly winds. We observed a weak but mostly supportable refreeze that broke down quickly under today's strong sunshine. Touring up North and East facing slopes on Virginia Lakes Ridge in the morning we found a transitional snowpack that got drier and colder as we ascended. Below tree line some areas under denser tree cover barely refroze last night and were unsupportable to skis. Most other areas were supportable. Higher up we still found some dry surface snow on steeper north faces, but most areas had seen some previous melt-freezing. Around noon we skied down a lower angle flank of Dunderbarg's SE Face. The strong winds kept the top couple hundred feet suprisingly frozen solid. However after descending only a little, the winds died down and the snow rapidly transitioned to supportable mashed potatoes. Below around 10,400 ft, last night's refreeze was nearly fully broken down and the snow became unsupportable to skis in spots. Boot penetration was over our boot tops and on steeper rolls we were able to trigger rollerballs. The slope was getting too wet and it was time to leave. The slope likely would have been in better condition an hour or so earlier. 

Snowpack photos: 
Weather Observations
Blowing Snow: 
No
Cloud Cover: 
Clear
Air temperature: 
Above Freezing
Wind Speed: 
Strong
Precipitation: 
None
Air temperature trend: 
Warming
Wind Direction: 
South
Accumulation rate: 
None
More detailed information about the weather: