The strength of a snow picket, no matter how the picket is placed, is directly correlated to to the quality of the snow. The strongest is always going to be a picket placed in a t-trench with snow backfilling it. That snow backfilling should be packed down and work-hardened. The second strongest is going to be a t-trench without backfill. The third will be a mid-clip picket. And finally, the weakest — but fastest picket placement — is the vertical picket.
In the following video, AMGA instructor team member Emile Drinkwater, demonstrates how to place pickets in three different orientations.
In addition to Emilie’s demonstration, please check out this excellent video from SMC on their pro picket:
Picket placement is a craft. And as with any other craft, it takes practice to do it well. Put in some time and effort with these devices before using them for real…
–Jason D. Martin