Monday, December 21, 2009

Avalanches and Snow Pits

The picture above is of our current snow pack, as it sits at Alta Vista on the Skyline Trail above Paradise. The letters along the bottom of the graph designate the density or hardness, with the hardest layers being indicated by the longest bars (or ratings of K or I). The depth of the snowpack is shown along the right-hand vertical axis. The temperature of the layers is shown by the scale across the top and the corresponding red line going down through the layers. You can see the crystal form in one of the columns to the right, but I don't have a key (graphic) to post here. Just know that the weak layer of our snowpack is around the 85+ cm depth. This is where we are likely to see failure and breakage resulting in avalanches.

Just thought you'd like to know. ;)

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