Sun, Mar 21, 2021 - 10:30 AM
McKenzie Pass Area (Black Crater, Belknap, Washington)
Snow Conditions No Avalanche Activity
Snowmobile Ski or Snowboard
Today we toured out to Belknap Crater from McKenzie Pass. Winds were moderate from the West for most of the day. There was plenty of new snow blowing around, and we observed some cornice building on Lee ridge tops above tree line. We toured under a low cloud deck through the lava flow but then entered the ping pong ball around 7000’. Freezing fog was creating rhyme on most surfaces above this elevation.
Quick hand shear tests on an east slope at 7300’ revealed a 4-6” thick wind slab that was well bonded to the crust layer below. No cracking or whumphing was observed in the wind deposited snow. Ski quality was excellent in the trees, but highly variable in open areas, with a firm rhyme crust and various densities of wind deposited snow.
Temperatures hovered around 23 degrees all day, no precipitation was noted.