Taos Region

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sody
Posts: 59
Joined: Mon Dec 17, 2012 4:23 pm

Re: Taos Region

Post by sody »

JBella wrote: Fri Jan 01, 2021 9:26 am I know that slope, check out the TAC observation from December 29th, second picture, titled https://taosavalanchecenter.org/pro-obs ... -treeline/
Ah, yep. that was it. I followed their skin track. Was wondering if they were just investigating or triggered the slide. It looked newer to me compared to the other slides.
Marc
Posts: 68
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2007 8:57 am
Location: New Mexico
Contact:

Re: Taos Region

Post by Marc »

There's a LOT of variability out there. Pit results showing mostly BRK or PC results on all aspects BTL/TL. West exposed aspects looks like some of the more sporadic areas of the reported NE-SE aspects with a wind affected layer that you'd need a chainsaw to get through. It would take a Gas-X to break through this layer to set it free. Some areas coming out of the alpine terrain on East aspects have provided some great cross loaded slopes that have settled out to yield some fantastic recycled powder.

Some collapsing on open meadows and talus fields on flat terrain noted. It's clear that there was a cycle of tenderness after the previous storm cycle, but time has seemed to heal up whatever didn't run naturally from secondary wind loading. Speaking of recycled pow, the faceting effect is clear in the midpack as the temp gradients are cannibalizing old MF crusts. This is where most test results were obtained at approx 30-40cm down with CTs @ BTL/TL, but got zero positive ECTs or PSTs anywhere on any aspect or elevation. No new avalanche activity noted over the past 6 days in the field in the Wheeler Peak district. Didn't see any HS >1m anywhere, but mostly in the 70-90cm range, unless it was on the scoured areas ATL.

Although the "warming trend" that has been present lately has not affected the SPX significantly enough to see Spring-like transformations on most south slopes, the solar gain is speckling the area around Taos with another round of MFC. The moderate winds that have occurred over an extended period have not developed major wind loading on lee and cross-loaded slopes as there's nothing left in the fetch to create high concern for the usual deposition zones. Crossing our toes for a storm cycle this weekend that is projected to extend down to the Southern mountains of NM, and should bring some much needed precip. This is the same storm that has caused havoc in the PNW and is making its way across the Intermountain Region in the next few days. So, we'll see how whatever precip we're given will bond and behave.

The spatial variability is as broad as I've seen it. I'm also seeing lots of BC travelers, COVID appropriate with masks and with their skiing risk acceptance. Great job out there! Good to see some younger jibbers having fun in the cirques as well.
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Marc
Posts: 68
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2007 8:57 am
Location: New Mexico
Contact:

Re: Taos Region

Post by Marc »

It’s been rather boring in the snow pits, so getting mileage in Has been more of the priority. The only thing that’s of clinical interest is the fact that the cold temperature regime continues to drive the faceting process and cannibalizing older non-persistent grains.

Fist hardness of >50 cm in most locations will likely become the new layer of interest once the new snow comes...whenever La Niña decides to give up a little precip.

Skied Peace Sign, and it was very supportive with a ampho-resistant slab persisting. Some cross loading in the upper bowls.

Biggest hazard right now is submerged obstacles especially in the trees BTL, non-hero breakable crusts, barbed wire fences/T-posts, and other fast luge riders.
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