THIS AVALANCHE ADVISORY EXPIRED ON December 24, 2014 @ 6:37 am
Avalanche Advisory published on December 23, 2014 @ 6:37 am
Issued by Andy Anderson - Tahoe National Forest

The avalanche danger should remain LOW for all aspects and elevations today. Use normal caution when traveling in the backcountry.

 

1. Low

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Above Treeline
Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.

1. Low

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Near Treeline
Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.

1. Low

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Below Treeline
Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
    Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
Avalanche Problem 1: Normal Caution
  • Type ?
  • Aspect/Elevation ?
  • Likelihood ?
    Certain
    Very Likely
    Likely
    Possible
    Unlikely
  • Size ?
    Historic
    Very Large
    Large
    Small

Night time temperatures near and in some cases below freezing combined with clear skis have allowed the snowpack to release enough heat into the atmosphere to continue to refreeze. Expect firm crusts all aspects this morning. On the northerly aspects and in shaded areas, these crusts should remain frozen all day. On the more sun exposed slopes, some softening may occur as the sun heats up the snow surface. The combination of limited sun-exposure, low sun angles, continued north and east winds, and an additional melt freeze cycle should prevent any serious wet snow instabilities from forming today. Recent data from around the forecast area continues to indicate a consolidating snowpack.

Even though the avalanche danger may remain low today, other hazards including the icy conditions and a shallow snowpack with lots of obstacles remain. Continue to use normal caution when traveling in the backcountry.

recent observations

Yesterday observations on Rubicon confirmed that snow coverage remains limited below 8000 ft. and that below 7500 ft. only patchy discontinuous coverage exists. Above 8000 ft. on NW-N-NE aspects, a firm, icy, and mostly supportable rain crust existed above a moist snowpack that reached about 4 ft. in depth by 9000 ft. Some softening did occur on the E-SE aspects between 8800 ft. and 8000 ft. allowing wet, sticky snow to form on the surface. These aspects started to refreeze as soon as the sun left them.

Weather and CURRENT CONDITIONS
weather summary

The forecast calls for more warm, sunny weather today due to the high pressure ridge over the area. Moderate northeast winds should continue through today at the upper elevations and along exposed ridgelines. Today's high temperatures should climb back into the mid to upper 40's above 7000 ft. Tonight the winds should shift to the southwest ahead of an approaching cold front. These winds will continue to increase through tomorrow, and temperatures should fall as the front arrives tomorrow afternoon and evening. Some snow could start falling tomorrow afternoon with a chance for up to 3 or 4 inches of accumulation by Wednesday evening. Check in with the Reno NWS for more information on the storm.

Weather observations from along the Sierra Crest between 8200 ft. and 8800 ft.
0600 temperature: 28 to 36 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 42 to 48 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: Northeast
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 20 to 25 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 57 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: 0 inches
Total snow depth: 23 to 37 inches
Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the Reno NWS
For 7000 ft. to 8000 ft.
Tuesday Tuesday Night Wednesday
Weather: Sunny Clear Partly cloudy with a chance of snow and a slight chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon
Temperatures: 45 to 51 deg. F. 23 to 33 deg. F. 41 to 48 deg. F.
Wind Direction: East Southwest Southwest
Wind Speed: 5 to 15 mph Light in the evening increasing to 10 to 20 mph after midnight 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 55 mph
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 1 to 2 in.
For 8000 ft. to 9000 ft.
Tuesday Tuesday Night Wednesday
Weather: Sunny Clear Partly cloudy with a chance of snow and a slight chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon
Temperatures: 35 to 45 deg. F. 27 to 34 deg. F. 30 to 40 deg. F.
Wind Direction: East Southwest Southwest
Wind Speed: 20 to 25 mph with gusts to 40 mph decreasing to 10 to 15 mph with gusts to 25 mph in the afternoon Light in the evening increasing to 15 to 25 mph with gusts to 40 mph after midnight 40 to 45 mph with gusts to 70 mph increasing to 65 to 70 mph with gusts to 105 mph in the afternoon
Expected snowfall: 0 in. 0 in. 1 to 3 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.