We started at 4200’ with little to no snow on a rain soaked icy trail. Rain line from Monday was up to 5700’. Once there was a foot plus of snow we experienced widespread collapses and cracking of snow. Sometimes the shaking caused adjacent trees to loose their snow and was so consistent we attempted to get video/audio of the collapsing. Unfortunately we weren’t successful.
Above 7000’ on a west aspect, we found a more supportive snowpack yet still thin (average 3’) with lots of buried obstacles. Cresting the ridge at 8500’ we observed the eastern aspect with a deeper (5’) snowpack from wind loading. To our surprise we did NOT see evidence of avalanches, likely the snowpack had not received enough of a load yet.
Time restraints prevented us from digging a pit, but the shallow and hollow snowpack did little to inspire any confidence. We stuck to our plan of staying out of Avalanche terrain and enjoyed low angle soft snow in a beautiful setting. The snowpack in this area is more continental than our deeper snowpacks in the lick creek, big creek summit, and northern areas. I would suspect an avalanche cycle to hit this area once the forecasted snow and warming hits this week.