Professional Observation - Noisy Basin

Location Name: 
Professional Observation - Noisy Basin
Swan Range - West Side (Flathead Valley access)
Date and time of observation: 
Sat, 01/16/2016 - 12:30
Location Map: 

Red Flags: 
Recent avalanche activity
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain
Obvious avalanche path
Terrain Trap

Observation made by: Professional Observer
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

While skiing/snowmobiling in the Noisy Basin area we saw evidence of several avalanches that occured within the last storm cycle.  Skiing along the ridge we were able to locate several crowns and perform stability tests at or near the sites.  In several of our pits we found instabilty within the storm snow, with failure occuring early in the storm cycle.  The other larger avalanche that we looked at had failed later in the storm and fractured much further down.  It had failed on a layer of facets/buried surface hoar.  This layer was below the very thin rain crust that formed last week when the upper elevations saw freezing rain.  

Weather Observations
Cloud Cover: 
100% of the sky covered by clouds
Air temperature: 
Below Freezing
Wind Speed: 
Calm (No air motion)
Accumulation rate: 
Less than 1 in. per hour
More detailed information about the weather: 

Lightly snowed all day.  No wind, and accumulations of less than 1 inch

Precip Rate: 
S -1; very light snowfall, trace to 0.5cm/hour