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PROFESSIONAL OBSERVATION FORM
 Start Date: 04.08.18 Name: Savage Operation: SAC
 Drainage/Route:  Galena Summit: Avalanche Peak area/Salmon River side Observed Terrain:  8100-9400' most aspects Zone/Region:  Smoky & Boulder Mountains
WEATHER OBSERVATIONS
 HN24: 8-12cm HST: 8-12cm Sky: X Precip: S-1 Temps: 20s F
 Ridgeline Wind: Light and Gusty
 Blowing Snow: L Snow Available for Transport: Small amounts
 Comments: Winds were light gusting moderate in exposed middle elevation terrain, had obviously blown at moderate+ speeds earlier.
AVALANCHE OBSERVATIONS
None Reported
SNOWPACK OBSERVATIONS
 HS: Didn't observe this much, but about 1m in sheltered 8200-8500' terrain.  
 Upper Pack: 8-12cm PP: 1-10cm rain crust (rained to at least 9400' although the crust was thin above 9200') that was K where scoured above and P otherwise: moist to wet melt freeze crystals to at least 30cm from surface in most places. The rain crust was supportable to ski and boot except below about 8400' in the trees where boot penetration was 50-80cm 
 Middle Pack: Not specifically observed, but many locations where where the pack was <120cm had moist/damp snow throughout the snowpack.  
 Lower Pack: Not observed except where shallow, see above.  
AVALANCHE PROBLEM ASSESSMENT
Avalanche Characteristics
Character/Avalanche Problem:
Wind Slab

Layer/Depth:
20-50cm

Likelihood of Triggering
Sensitivity:
Reactive

Spatial Distribution:
Isolated
Terrain
  Primary Concern Comments: Not enough new snowfall for a big problem at middle elevations. Guessing that upper elevation paths with bigger fetches would have some decent wind slabs, and they were not bonding well to the slimy crust beneath them.
 
Avalanche Characteristics
Character/Avalanche Problem:
Wet Loose

Layer/Depth:
8-15cm

Likelihood of Triggering
Sensitivity:
Touchy

Spatial Distribution:
Widespread
Terrain
  Problem 2 Comments: Steeper than 40* would have been quite touchy in this area due to greasy loose snow slides failing on interface that did not freeze...muted solar input still did enough to change the surface snow and get things right to the edge today.
STABILITY TESTS
 Stability Test Results: Only hand shear tests.
OBVIOUS SIGNS OF INSTABILITY
 Marked with checkmark if observed:
 Cracking (isolated)   Length: 3m
SNOW STABILITY
 Snow Stability Rating for your observed area: Good Confidence: HIGH Trend:
BOTTOM LINE
 Comments: Not enough snow for widespread wind slabs at middle elevations, but I think this would be an issue near/above 10000' in this area. Snow wasn't bonding that well to the still moist/damp/wet crust below on most slopes - call it dry loose, wet loose, whatever...the greasy crust below the new snow is funky and may stay that way for another day or 2. It will be interesting to see if this improves or worsens if/when the crust actually freezes hard. Good ski quality, especially on slopes <30*. Rain fell to at least 9400'. The rain event appeared to be minor above about 9200-9300'. The top of the rain crust is now the obvious marker in the snowpack. The rain crust varied from 1-10cm thick and was quite rubbery in many areas with moist/damp/wet snow beneath it. The crust will keep us out of the mushy oatmeal-like mess below for now, but the snowpack appears to have made the transition to spring in this area - moist snow to the ground could be here to stay.