Monday, January 17, 2011

Wacky Weather!

We all thought La Nina was going to give us a cold and wet winter with lots of snow and great skiing.  Well, there have been some good days of skiing at Paradise, of course, in the last month, but there's been a lot of wild weather.

We're currently on the tail end of a 7" rain storm at Paradise.  It was raining at times, clear up to 9000 feet.  Fortunately, no major flooding damaged any roads (so far).  We're planning on opening the road to Paradise today, after keeping it closed yesterday, due to avalanches (both snow, rock, and mud), flood, and rockfall potential.

Ranger Drew Bryenton dug a pit last week.  Look for more full profiles from Drew.  We'll post them here as well as on the NWAC website.  Here's the January 11th, full profile / before all this rain.

Currently, the rain has switched to snow.  It's sticking to the old rain surface pretty well.  The new snow density is about 40%...  Not good skiing, but good for stability.

There are some scheduled climbs this week.  I hope to hear back from them so stay tuned.

~ 2 hours later:  Just got back in from digging around for avalanche stability along the road to Paradise:

Date/Time: 1/17/2011 ~ 10:00am
Elevation: 5250
Slope: 49deg
Aspect: 170degT
Weather: Snowing
Temp: 32F
Lat: 46.781244
Long: -121.743672


SST (Shovel Shear) - STE @ 35cm Q3 (Weaker waterlogged snow just collapsed).
CT (Compression Test) - CTE(5) @ 35cm Q3 (Weak snow collapsing)
ECT (Extended Collumn Test) - ECTX (No propogation across collumn / shovel only plowing down)
RB (Rutschblock Test) - RB3 @ 35cm Q3 MB (Weaker snow collapse / no shear surface).