The gusty NW winds yesterday were strong enough to be moving significant amounts of new snow onto leeward terrain at upper and mid-elevations. The recent storm system favored our northern mountains, with more than a foot of snow falling in the Northern Wallowas and the Blues. Other mountain zones received 6-10" of new snow. This light density snow was being easily moved by the wind yesterday creating touchy wind slabs a foot thick or more. The stout rain crust from last week has created a slick surface which the new snow is not bonding to. Riders should expect to find touchy wind slabs on south-facing aspects at upper elevations and on leeward terrain features mid-slope. These mid-slope terrain features include rocky ribs, gullies, and small ridges. If you see smooth pillows of snow or witness shooting cracks eminating from underneath your boards or sled move to lower angle terrain.
Yesterday, I was avoiding slopes greater than 35 degrees, especially on leeward terrain near ridgeline. Even a shallow wind slab releasing on the slick rain crust from last week could pick up speed rapidly and send you crashing into trees, rocks, or over cliffs. Catastrophic injuries could result.