Avalanche Forecast published on February 22, 2019 @ 6:51 am
This Avalanche Forecast expires in 20 hours, 58 minutes
This Forecast is valid for 24 hours
Issued by Brandon Schwartz - Tahoe National Forest

A few areas of MODERATE avalanche danger linger near treeline and above treeline due to small wind slabs. Below treeline, LOW avalanche danger continues.

2. Moderate

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Above Treeline
Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.

2. Moderate

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Near Treeline
Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.

1. Low

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Below Treeline
Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.
    Heightened avalanche conditions on specific terrain features. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully; identify features of concern.
Avalanche Problem 1: Wind Slab
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Recent NE winds have drifted snow in near treeline and above treeline areas. Small wind slabs exist on SE-S-SW-W-NW aspects. Light wind scouring has occurred on N-NE-E aspects in most near to above treeline areas. Avalanche size D1 is expected with the consequences mainly created by being carried into rocks or trees, over a cliff, or into a terrain trap.

Identify the features of concern where recently drifted snow has deposited to form wind slabs by interpreting wind pillows and snow surface texturing. Determine the possible consequences of being carried into hazards down slope. Discuss whether those consequences match the acceptable level of risk for you and your group. If not, choose lower consequence terrain.

Forecast discussion

Gradual warming today and tomorrow under the late February sun will allow for some minor warming instability, especially at the low and mid elevations. Expect to see some minor amounts of roller balls in sun exposed areas as snow falls off of rocks and trees. Problematic loose wet avalanches are not expected at this time.

recent observations

* Observations made and received yesterday from Peak 9,269' (West Shore Tahoe area) and from Becker/Talking Mtn (Echo Summit area) noted small reactive wind slabs in ridgetop areas on S-SW-W aspects. A thin sun crust below a few inches of recent new snow was noted on SE-S-SW-W aspects up to at least 9,200'.

* Signs of instability below treeline have been isolated and limited to skier triggered surface sluffs in very steep/extreme terrain.

* The mid and bottom portions of the snowpack remain well bonded with instabilities limited to the upper portion of the snowpack.

Weather and CURRENT CONDITIONS
weather summary

Weak high pressure is moving into the forecast area. A few lingering snow showers are possible this morning. Decreasing clouds are expected today with sunny skies developing. Moderate speed ridgetop winds from the NE this morning are forecast to decrease in speed today and then shift to the W overnight into tomorrow. Generally quiet weather is expected this weekend with the return of precipitation for the start of next week.

Weather observations from along the Sierra Crest between 8200 ft. and 8800 ft.
0600 temperature: 5 to 11 deg. F.
Max. temperature in the last 24 hours: 13 to 20 deg. F.
Average wind direction during the last 24 hours: NE
Average wind speed during the last 24 hours: 38 mph
Maximum wind gust in the last 24 hours: 66 mph
New snowfall in the last 24 hours: Trace to 4 inches
Total snow depth: 109 to 142 inches
Two-Day Mountain Weather Forecast Produced in partnership with the Reno NWS
For 7000 ft. to 8000 ft.
Today Tonight Saturday
Weather: Partly cloudy then becoming sunny. Scattered snow showers in the morning. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 25%. Clear. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%. Partly cloudy. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%.
Temperatures: 25 to 30 deg. F. 7 to 15 deg. F. 29 to 34 deg. F.
Mid Slope Winds: Northeast 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph in the morning becoming light. Light winds. Light winds.
Expected snowfall: No accumulation. | SWE = trace amounts. No accumulation. | SWE = none. No accumulation. | SWE = none.
For 8000 ft. to 9000 ft.
Today Tonight Saturday
Weather: Partly cloudy then becoming sunny. Scattered snow showers in the morning. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Clear. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 5%. Partly cloudy. Snow levels below 7000 feet. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Temperatures: 19 to 25 deg. F. 8 to 13 deg. F. 25 to 31 deg. F.
Ridge Top Winds: East around 15 mph with gusts to 30 mph in the morning becoming light. West around 15 mph with gusts to 30 mph. West around 15 mph with gusts to 30 mph.
Expected snowfall: No accumulation. | SWE = trace amounts. No accumulation. | SWE = none. No accumulation. | SWE = none.
Disclaimer

This avalanche forecast is provided through a partnership between the Tahoe National Forest and the Sierra Avalanche Center. This forecast 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 forecast applies only to backcountry areas outside established ski area boundaries. This forecast describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. This forecast expires 24 hours after the posted time unless otherwise noted. The information in this forecast is provided by the USDA Forest Service who is solely responsible for its content.

For a recorded version of the avalanche forecast call (530) 587-3558 x258

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