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April 21, 2003, Mt ST Helens

WA Cascades West Slopes South (Mt Rainier)
Posted by peaceriver on 4/21/03 8:49pm
Easter evening car ride in rain to the Marblemount Snow park. Monday Am hard rain from 0200-0800. 0930 found us with a late start but no pounding rain just a light drizzle. Skinable snow starts at about 3200 but booting was just as easy. 4200 snow deepens/softens and skins go on. Dense fog/clouds at 4500 was impressive, not a wisp of breeze just impressive super dense fog. swonpack was water saturated with a 7,000?? + freezing level. On steeper aspects heavy sloughs and as we climbed through the 5200 ft level these sloughs became a bit more impressive. Made it to a bit under 6,000.

At this point the snow and vis encouraged us to turn around.

  When does a slough became a avalanche?? We set off one that entrapped a secondary surface layer that had a 6" crown, a hasty pit showed several extremely wet surface layers on at times a airy and cohesionless under bed. A little concerning on our decent when a I set a small slab off on my partner about 20ft below me that partially buried his legs.

Wet heavy snow on the ride down. The most fun was the trail through the trees on the bottom.


Good Info, CW, Thanks.

I think a slough becomes an avalanche when you're on the receiving end  :)


CW -- do you still need a sno-park pass at Marble Mountain sno-park?

My impression is that you need a Northwest  taxed times two forest pass. Not that I use one.

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2003-04-22 03:49:31