Avalanche Advisory published on January 30, 2015 @ 6:49 am
This advisory is valid for 24 hours
Issued by Brandon Schwartz - Tahoe National Forest
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Avalanche danger remains LOW for all elevations and aspects. Small isolated areas of instability may linger in complex or extreme terrain. Normal caution is advised.

How to read the advisory


Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features. Natural and human-triggered avalanches unlikely. Small avalanches in isolated areas or extreme terrain.

avalanche danger

How to read the advisory

1. Low

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Above Treeline

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Near Treeline

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Below Treeline

Avalanche danger remains LOW for all elevations and aspects. Small isolated areas of instability may linger in complex or extreme terrain. Normal caution is advised.

Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features. Natural and human-triggered avalanches unlikely. Small avalanches in isolated areas or extreme terrain.
weather

Low pressure passing well to the south of the forecast area brought overcast cloud cover to the region last night. As this weather system moves off to the east today, skies are expected to clear from north to south during the afternoon hours. Ridgetop winds will increase in speed out of the northeast this afternoon and tonight, lasting through Saturday. Air temperatures are in the mid 20s to mid 30s this morning across the 6,000' to 10,000' elevation range with minimal inversion. Maximum daytime air temperatures are forecast to reach the upper 30s to low 40s today for areas above 7,000'. For Saturday expect sunny skies, a warming trend at the upper elevations, and strong northeast winds.

recent observations

Observations made yesterday on Rubicon Peak (West Shore Tahoe area) revealed no signs of instability. Snow surface conditions consisted of 0.5 to 2 inches of recent new snow on top of supportable crust. Snow cover was very thin to nonexistent below 7,600' on all aspects. Snowpack depth quickly increased to 3 to 4 feet above 8,000' on NW-N-NE aspects. Old near crust facets are continuing to round and gain strength on northerly aspects in this area with snowpit tests indicating that failure of this layer is unlikely. Very small amounts of surface wet snow were noted at 12:45 pm on flat terrain at 7,500'. Observations made the day prior near Elephant's Back (Carson Pass area) revealed signs of lingering small and shallow wind slabs in recently wind loaded areas.

Avalanche Problem 1:   Normal Caution
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    Same Danger

Small and shallow lingering wind slabs and small amounts of surface wet snow are expected today, neither of which are expected to pose a major hazard to backcountry travelers. The most likely locations to encounter a lingering unstable wind slab is in complex or extreme terrain in the form of couloirs, gullies, and unsupported slopes above cliff bands. Slab size is expected at 6 inches deep or less and only extending a short distance down slope. The most significant associated hazard is the possibility of being pushed into rocks, trees, or over cliffs. Areas of wet snow will be slow to form today due to cloud cover, but an inch or so of wet snow is likely to form during the afternoon hours. If cloud cover clears either slower or faster than forecast, this will affect the amount of surface wet snow that forms today.

CURRENT CONDITIONS  Weather observations from along the Sierra Crest between 8200 ft. and 8800 ft.
0600 temperature: 29 to 33 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 41 to 46 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: Northeast
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 15 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 24 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: 0 inches
Total snow depth: 24 to 33 inches
Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast  Produced in partnership with the Reno NWS
For 7000 ft. to 8000 ft.
  Today Tonight Saturday
Weather: Mostly cloudy skies in the morning, then partly cloudy. Partly cloudy skies, becoming clear. Sunny skies.
Temperatures: 36 to 43 deg. F. 20 to 27 deg. F. 37 to 44 deg. F.
Wind direction: E NE NE
Wind speed: 10 to 15 mph with gusts to 25 mph. 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 45 mph. 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 45 mph.
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
For 8000 ft. to 9000 ft.
  Today Tonight Saturday
Weather: Mostly cloudy skies in the morning, then partly cloudy. Partly cloudy skies, becoming clear. Sunny skies.
Temperatures: 37 to 43 deg. F. 21 to 28 deg. F. 41 to 47 deg. F.
Wind direction: E shifting to NE NE NE
Wind speed: 10 to 15 mph with gusts to 25 mph, shifting and increasing to 25 to 30 mph with gusts to 45 mph in the afternoon. 40 to 50 mph with gusts to 75 mph. 45 to 50 mph with gusts to 75 mph, decreasing to 35 to 40 mph with gusts to 60 mph in the afternoon.
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 0 in.
Disclaimer

This avalanche advisory is provided through a partnership between the Tahoe National Forest and the Sierra Avalanche Center. This advisory covers the Central Sierra Nevada Mountains between Yuba Pass on the north and Ebbetts Pass on the south. Click here for a map of the forecast area. This advisory applies only to backcountry areas outside established ski area boundaries. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This advisory expires 24 hours after the posted time unless otherwise noted. The information in this advisory is provided by the USDA Forest Service who is solely responsible for its content.

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