Black Mtn

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SNOWPACK OBSERVATION
Black Mtn
Submission Info
Forecaster
Sunday, May 7, 2017 - 2:45pm
Red Flags: 
Recent avalanche activity
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain
Obvious avalanche path
Black Mtn 38° 2' 18.6612" N, 119° 16' 41.9052" W
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

Traveled up to Virginia Lakes to assess the road access and new snow adhesion, Wind Slabs potential, and previous activity. The road is still closed but over the weekend the road crews are not working and you can drive to just short of the uppermost campground. Still ~ 1 to 2 meters (3 to 5’) of snow at the trailhead. Skied up toward Red Lake with the intention of ascending the east face of Black Mountain then descending the north face toward Cooney Lake. Consistent 15 to 20 cm dense new snow (6 to 8”) over melt/freeze crust. Hand shears moderate but low clouds and poor visibility prevented further ascent above 10,400’. Surface snow – 2 mm rimed irregulars and 4mm Graupel. Observed several small debris fields below very steep chutes and cliff bands below ~10,400’, North aspect on the west ridge of Mt Olsen (ridgeline between Mt. Olsen & Black Mnt.), D1-D1.5. New snow grew progressively wet below 10,000’. Unable to access terrain to adequately assess Wind Slab distribution and sensitivity. Little Virginia Lake outlet beginning to open-up. Cloud cover prevent Rollerballing and sun effect. The new snow and continued coolish tempertures will set the Corn Clock back a bit in the alpine, especially from Mammoth north, above ~9500'.  

Any other comments about the observation or links to outside pages that have more info on the observation: 

Encountered a couple of groups of people, combination of locals and SoCals. 

Weather Observations
Blowing Snow: 
Yes
Cloud Cover: 
100% of the sky covered by clouds
Air temperature: 
Above Freezing
Wind Speed: 
Light
Precipitation: 
Snow
Air temperature trend: 
Static
Wind Direction: 
North
Accumulation rate: 
Less than 1 in. per hour
More detailed information about the weather: 

Cloud base fluctuated between 10,500' and 9500'. Occasional light to moderate snow showers. Wind - north/light. Some light saltation but no turbulent suspension noted. Viability limited due to cloud obscuration of summits. occasional light to moderate snow showers moving through the area. Snow surface varied from dense powder to semi-supportive crust.  

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