Observations

Tuckerman Ravine

February 17, 2021 at 12:00 PM
Name: Jeffrey Fongemie| https://mountwashingtonavalanchecenter.org
Location: Tuckerman Ravine

Walked to Tuckerman Ravine looking for results of prior day’s mixed precip storm. Skies were clear, temperatures in the single digits below zero and wind was strong. Blowing snow at the ridgetops was minimal. Overall, the level of the snow hasn’t changed much from the 2 inches of snow and freezing rain. Gully tops are mostly scoured to a frozen surface and looks to be ice glazed. The recent avalanche crown in Chute is still clearly visible.

Mid-way down the gullies include a mix of snow surfaces: pockets of dull wind slab likely from snow at the tail end of the storm, shiny ice crust covered old wind slabs and wind scoured highly textured old bed surfaces. In the floor of the ravine, and hiking up the Tuck’s Trail we found soft snow in protected areas capped with a 2-3 cm breakable crust.

Out in the open, the refrozen hard snow is ice glazed and Knife hard with little boot penetration. Fresh wind slabs we walked through on top of an ice crust were mostly 1F and Pencil hard often with 1 or 2cm slightly softer (1F – to 4F) snow beneath. The fresh wind slabs on top of the frozen crust were well adhered despite the softer snow interface. I was glad to be on foot and not on skis.