Kruser rallies and I have to go. The 5" fresh snow of the lowest density, and the weather report of sunny skies and no wind overnight made it a GO.
The snow on the north facing slopes was a "10". Billowing as we descended, the snow just hung in the air like smoke. The base is there, but we couldn't feel it on the descent - it was more like floating. And we even found remnants of our uptrack from last week to make the trail breaking tolerable (after 8 hrs breaking yesterday, we needed it.) No wind, sunny skies, and cold smoke.
A little late on the start, still feeling yesterday's trailbreaking - the downside of loop trips, we made it to Independence at 11:30 and got in 3 Microdot laps before heading home. We had the mountain to ourselves, while dozens of others tracked Skyscraper, Hatch, Government, and Marmot (Fish).