Date and time of observation:
Sat, 12/14/2019 - 13:40
United States44° 49' 47.5896" N, 115° 57' 53.6004" W
Whumphing noises, shooting cracks, or collapsing
Toured up Jughandle in thin early season conditions. Had several collapses and whumpfs in the lower meadows. We dug a pit to find the layer of concern on a NW aspect mid slope. An inch of weak facets sitting on top of an ice crust (old october snow) buried underneath 20 inches of the snow since thanksgiving. We had this layer fail during isolation during our tests and showed the ability to propagate.
We stayed out of avalanche terrain and made note of the wind slabs developing near the ridge. Overall depth of snowpack was 75 cms on the western aspect, but was relatively supportive. Lots of stumps, rocks, and logs still lurking to underneath the surface. We looked at the eastern side, but visibility was poor and we were spooked of steeper terrain.
The snowpack structure will have us making conservative calls and staying out of any avalanche terrain and has us very concerned for when it does snow more.