Please remember that these observations indicate what was going on in the snowpack at a single point in time and space. They may not represent conditions where you are or where you plan to be. They also come from a variety of sources. SAC cannot vouch for the quality or accuracy of any observations that come from the general public. Some of these may be professional quality observations; some may not. Please use observations listed on this page as part of your information gathering process, but as always don't make decisions based on a single piece of information. If you are looking for more information on how to understand the information on this page, all of the pit data graphs and stability tests are part of what is presented in a Level II avalanche class that follows the American Avalanche Association (AAA) or American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) curriculum guidelines. All of the coding and abbreviations for data presented follows the publication Snow, Weather, and Avalanches: Observational Guidelines for Avalanche Programs in the United States (SWAG) which is the standard for all professional avalanche programs in the US. An electronic copy is available here. Most of what you are looking for is in Chapter 2 and Appendix F part 1. We use a program called SnowPilot to create the snowpit graphs. It is available as an online tool or as a downloadable program at This website also has a quick video and user guide on how to use create snowpits. Please send us your observations using the buttons below.
Date and time of observation or avalanche occurrence Location Region Observation Type Photos Snowpack, Avalanche, Weather Videos Snowpit videos (tests, etc) Observation made by
04/17/2019 - 11:30 Stevens Peak Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation D1 loose wet on an E facing slope on Stevens Skier triggered rollerballs and pinwheels Boot top deep wet snow with a ski supportable but not boot supportable crust. Wind affected colder snow on the ridge above 9300 ft. Forecaster
04/16/2019 - 11:00 Hidden Peak West Shore Area Avalanche Observation Intentionally skier triggered loose wet avalanche size D1.5.  E aspect, 8500', 35 + degree slope. Small roller ball activity from ski turns involving the recent 3-4'' of new snow. Below 8000' at 10am, 2-3'' of new snow on top of 4F wet snow.  Little to no overnight refreeze at lower elevations below 8000'. Minor cracking in wind loaded terrain.  Wind transported snow was limited to near ridgelines and did not extend downslope very far. E face of Crag Peak.  Small D1 natural loose wet avalanches that occurred by 11am this morning. Forecaster
04/16/2019 - 09:30 Powderhouse Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Less than an inch of new snow just below 8000 feet. Above tree line there was very minor cracking in wind loaded areas. Small cohesive chunks broke on test slopes, but no larger propagation observed. Professional Observer
04/15/2019 - 11:30 Jakes Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Mostly cloudy skies with some partial sun breaks. 8000', E aspect, at 11:15am.  1-2'' of soft wet snow on top of a 2'' 1f MF crust on top of more wet snow. Forecaster
04/14/2019 - 14:00 Angora Peak Desolation Wilderness Area (including Emerald Bay) Snowpack Observation Professional Observer
04/14/2019 - 11:30 Silver Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Mostly cloudy skies with some sun breaks. Looking south along the Crest through the Tahoe Basin. Potentially more sun further south. Thick cloud cover to the west of the Silver Peak at 11:20am. Forecaster
04/13/2019 - 14:30 Luther Pass Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Professional Observer
04/13/2019 - 11:00 Johnson Canyon Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Fully boot supportable 9 inch thick K hard crust at 6,560' at 9:40 am. Still ski supportable but not boot supportable 9 inch thick 1F hard crust at 7,420' at 10:15 am. Fractures behind cornices, common in this climate. Forecaster
04/13/2019 - 07:00 Echo Peak Echo Summit Area Snowpack Observation Large debris from previous wet slide Many previous wet slides Another previous wet slide Public
04/12/2019 - 12:30 Donner Summit - Black Wall Snowpack Observation The melt/freeze crust started to become unsupportable on S-SE-E aspects below 7000 ft. by 12:30 The melt/freeze crust was still boot supportable as of noon on S-SE-E aspects. 1 to 2 inches of wet corn snow on top of a 6 inch thick melt/freeze crust on an E aspect at 10 am. About 16 inches of wet snow existed below the crust. Glide cracks on an E aspect. Forecaster
04/12/2019 - 11:00 Jake's Peak (Emerald Bay) West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Loose wet debris on SE slope Zero ski pen on scoured surface Trees dusted w/ snow up high Large debris under a light coat of snow Public
04/11/2019 - 11:30 Blackwood Ridge Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation Thick frozen crust on top of wet snow. Scoured icy rain crusts on an E aspect. The crust was boot and ski supportable during our tour and showed no signs of melting as of noon. Cloud cover increased during our tour and light snow started to fall around noon. Forecaster
04/10/2019 - 14:00 Incline Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation 1"+ Wind affected but smooth cold new snow on higher 9400' N/NE aspects at 145p - Fog is from lens Smooth warm non-sticky South Facing turns to 8200' at 2p - supported on skis but shin deep w boots Public
04/10/2019 - 12:00 Chickadee Ridge Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Wind sculpting and scouring exposing a firm crust along the ridge from the NE winds. The refrozen crust was thick, frozen, and supportable on a sunny south facing slope at noon. Patches of new snow less than .5 inches deep existed on top of the firm refrozen crust. In most places the crust was exposed on the surface. The thin veneer of new snow was scoured away from the exposed northerly aspects leaving a firm icy crust behind. Forecaster
04/10/2019 - 12:00 Blue Lakes Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Public


Subscribe to Central Sierra Nevada / Lake Tahoe Snowpack, Weather, and Avalanche Observations for California and Nevada from SAC