December 17

Because of new rules, forced on me without inclusion in the decision, I started at Mueller park and ascended Kern river pipeline, southwest facing, to the ridge.

Descended the northeast facing till it became impeneratable brush and ascended the north facing to the ridge.

Descended once again to the brush, ascending the same path, then reversing the original up back to Mueller park.


Overcast with light snow at times. Winds were light near the ridges, with speeds less than 15mph out of the north. Cool temperatures.


The total snow pack in the area is less than three feet, consisting of near surface faceting over a supportable denser layer over snow approaching the depth hoar category near the ground. There had been some sort of avalanche cycle recently, as a shallow crown was observed on the easterly facing. The crown was shallow, less than about six inches and around fifty feet wide running several hundred feet. Timing is unknown. There was also some sluffing on steeper terrain, involving a bit more than the surface snow and beginning to pack just a bit of punch. No other signs of instability.

It snowed perhaps an inch of fluff, today.

Bottom Line:

Snow is stable with sluffing the primary concern. This would change rapidly, with significant snow accumulation.

December 18

Started on the Bowman trail, ascending to the top of the Cabin run on Gobblers.

Descended two pitches to below Baker Springs.

Ascended the same route after climbing back up to the trail and continued over the top of Gobblers descending off the top and down the middle continuing down and out Porter.


Snow heavy at times all day. Winds were from the west in the 10-20mph along the ridges.


Perhaps 8 inches of new snow accumulated during the day over the inch or two from yesterday. Snow was bonding fairly well but we did get a few new snow sluff on the steeper terrain. One avalanche was triggered on a 40 °+ break over northwest facing mid slope face of Gobblers. It was about 20 feet wide and a foot deep running a coupla hundred vertical.

Not large enough to bury, but a ride could have been taken. I didn't trigger the slide.

No other avalanches. We had no collapsing and cracking was localized and within new snow layering.

Bottom Line:

Winds have been strong enough to both move snow and create soft slabs some of which are sensitive. I wouldn't think there's enough accumulation to activate older layering but would keep an eye on the total water weight and wind speed along with duration.


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