Originally Posted by kawo
While reading the numerous threads surrounding the recent avalanches I've noticed that frequently the snow pack instability was blamed on a deep layer of rain crust and/or a layer of "rotten snow" (depth hoar?).
What are the thoughts on snow (in)stability for the weeks and months to come?
Have the slides taken down the bad layers?
Under what conditions can such layers bond and become more stable?
I basically an armchair quarterback this year, but slightly better informed than the other arm chair quarterbacks.
the bad layers are still there, they arent moving from any control work.
thats how thick the jackson hole rain crust is its almost impenetrable as long as that crust remains its will still be dangerous.
the conditions that would make it stable are warmth. This isnt 100 percent and nothing is in snow science. sun light and warmth will pack down the snowpack in laymans terms. Jackson Hole crappy exposure will actually help getting more sunlight on the slopes than say snowbird.
The wasatch range in utah is only high danger(down from extreme) now but its like playing russian roulette with very large bombs. The snow pack above the rain crust would be very stable stand alone. In fact if it didnt snow till the first big storm December 8th and then just just kept dumping like it did this year. It would be a very stable snowpack. there would be no depth hoar there would be no rain crust. the snow pack would be homogeneous top to bottom which is the safest kinda of snow pack there is.
Id hate to say but in my very amateur opinion I think something north facing in utah or wyoming will go while open post controlled towards the end of the season IF it doesnt heat up at all and break that rain crust down.