Crusts on all Solar Aspects

Location Name: 
Lake Fork Drainage
Region: 
Williams Lake Area
Date and time of observation: 
Wed, 03/04/2020 - 11:00



Observation made by: Professional Observer
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

Strong overnight Eastern winds in the mid 40's, with gusts in the 60's hardened the snow surface on North and East aspects above treeline. These overnight winds hammered and eroded Northern slopes at our highest elevations. There were clear indications of these winds peeling away the snow surface on these uppermost slopes. A breakable wind crust was found on terrain above treeline and areas near treeline in open areas. Sastrugi was widespread in this terrain as well, primarily on North and East facing aspects.    

While the sun was making a strong impact, winds out of the West during the morning kept solar aspects colder for longer. These solar aspects softened up by the early afternoon, but not as significant as previous calmer days. Crusts were present on all solar aspects at all elevations; in the form of melt freeze crusts and sun crusts. We observed that the upper 10cms of snow on southern aspects was beginning to show signs of moistening, but the remainder of the snowpack underneath remained dry. When digging down in one particular area, there were no signs of previous water percolating deeper down into the snowpack. 

The snowpack below treeline is quickly melting out.

No wet-loose avalanches were observed.    

Photo 1: Strong overnight winds hammered the North face of Lake Fork Peak

Photo 2: Sastrugi on Northern slopes. Hardened snow surface Above treeline. 

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

A beautiful, clear day. Strong solar impact. The sun warmed the snow surface more gradually than the day before. Temperatures rose to the mid 40's below treeline. Near treeline saw mid day temps above freezing in the mid 30's. At upper elevations, temps remained in the mid 20's all day. Strong overnight winds out of the east shifted to the west during the day and blew in the mid to upper teens. No precip.