Posted: Sat Apr 14, 2012 12:38 pm Post subject: Creep Crack Holes.
An unusual 'snow feature' is around this year more than most seasons: snow covered holes and cracks. This Spring has found several local hiker/skiers digging their way out after unexpectedly falling into them.
The phenomenal amount of snow on the ground combined with Spring freeze/thaw cycles seem to be creating separations in the pack that are not usually present. The geologic details that cause these seem to vary from thinly disguised creep cracks, bergshrunds to desiccated lakes/ponds/stream and other ??????? features.
Surfaces features seem to be minimal to indicate the weakness. One person fell into 20 ft crack without injury, another took a 15ft elevator-ride into a unseen tree well. JohnyJ had the surface collapse on level snow and ended up suspended over a 20 ft deep hole of unknown origin.
a death occurred 2 or 3 days ago in the local Chugach, details sketchy
Sounds more like an undetected crevasse that 'cracked' up into the pack and then collapsed with skier weight. A mid-slope incident.
Last edited by J on Sat Apr 21, 2012 1:00 pm; edited 1 time in total
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