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NWAC Avalanche
+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
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| |-+  March 2014 Backcountry Trip Reports
| | |-+  March 18- Commonwealth/Kendall Avi Danger
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Author Topic: March 18- Commonwealth/Kendall Avi Danger  (Read 2396 times)

Posts: 443

March 18- Commonwealth/Kendall Avi Danger
« on: 03/19/14, 12:15 PM »

Nevermind that the snow turned to slop we had fun in low angle trees but had to avoid numerous wet snow slides some of which we actually witnessed from a safe distance. 

This was a classic day of avalanche danger matching the reports on nwac and on TAY.  Wet snow underneath 8-16 new on Kendall.  It was well bonded but the soaking snowpack below it was warm and itself unstable.  Creeks and waterfalls were still raging along pretty well and evidence of last week's hydro abounded.  So when the sun hit some of the scree/slide paths along the PCT in commonwealth everything below 4300k slid.  Pinwheels abounded and some of the wet snow slides were significant enough to bury and trap a person.  Even more some of the wet snow in the trees showed evidence of movement as serac like features were found resulting from last weeks heavy rain.  Even in the old growth. 

Long story short even though there was evidence of much of upper Kendall/ Kendall Catwalk having already slid I have no doubt a little sun and a skier or two could still cause some big slides to go.   Cautionary tale of the day was that our up path was covered by significant debris on the way down.  Clearly our safer lower than PCT route was not low enough.  Wet snow slides went further than anticipated. 

I'll clearly take some criticism for being out in that spot yesterday.  Though I have to say I've seen plenty of snowshoers taking a nice 'scenic' lunch under that waterfall and scree 'fan' feature in lower commonwealth basin.  Bad place for lunch.   
« Last Edit: 03/19/14, 01:36 PM by savegondor » Logged

Posts: 293

Re: March 18- Commonwealth/Kendall Avi Danger
« Reply #1 on: 03/19/14, 10:15 PM »

Helpful info, thanks for the share. 

No criticism here, you went out in the mountains...own it.

"Point your tips and be brave"

If someone skis in the Cascades and doesn't post on the internet, did it even happen?
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