Cloudy on the tops, fresh snow.
17th December 2019
A nice calm day with poor visibility on the tops today. There has been fresh snow overnight which is down to around 250 metres with hard trail breaking above 450 meters. I saw some roller balls and one avalanche which I can be certain about on Creag Dhubh. This was on a North aspects, it was covered over with some fresh new snow fall but the snow was not deep enough to hide it. I think it came down in the early hours as I am going by the snow amounts and timing we get from our special Met office SAIS weather forecast.
As we said yesterday there is still some pockets and small areas of wind slab on high coire rims and gully tops and while its stubborn to release it is in some cases sitting on a weak layer and it takes a bit of a deliberate force to release it. We use compression or tap test on the back of our shovels but sometimes a shovel shear test. There are many different test we carry out in the field. But a passing climber, walker or skier can also do the trick or in this case its most likely to be the additional loading of fresh heavy snow showers which would have caused the release.
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