We found some really nice snow in the Hakuba backcountry today. Despite warm temperatures, on the shady sides we found fine faceted sugar powder with a little graupel mixed in and a topping of surface hoar. It was fast, with a thaw crust some 15 cm below, but stable and fun!
On sunny aspects, we found smooth-turning spring slush that sluffed easily on the steep spots but was only some 10 cm deep.
It’s snowing on top of all that tonight, probably bonding fairly well on the sunny aspects and not bonding very well at all on the shady ones. If it turns to rain as the weather models suggest late tonight and tomorrow, look for some natural releases on those shady slopes.
Photo and comments by Bill Glude