Went for a ski tour in the Southern Madison's up Lightning Creek in search of a deeper snowpack. Our tour brought us up Woodward Mountain via the E sub-ridge with a plan to ski in the bowl to the north on a NE aspect. The snowpack varied immensely due to sun effect/wind loading but overall found 50-60 cm of snow in the deeper locations. We performed 3 CTs in representative locations of our intended ski line and had results of CT21 Q2, CT15 Q2, and CTN. The columns broke on a layer of 4F facets midway down from the surface. Combining this data with a lack of other signs of instability (cracking, whumpfing, recent avalanches, recent loading), we decided to ski our intended line.
Snow quality on the ascent and decent varied from "ripple pow" to breakable wind crust to unbreakable wind crust. Overall, was a great day in the BC getting familiar with our early season snowpack even though good ski conditions lacked.