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
01/17/2020 - 13:45 Carpenter Peak Independence Lake Area Snowpack Observation Minor wind slab surface instability, triggered by small natural cornice collapses. ECTP-22 on facets below Jan 4 crust. Hand hardness in pit with ECTP result. Snowpit location with ECTN, ECTX, and PST sf results. Forecaster
01/17/2020 - 13:00 Border Ruffian Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Professional Observer
01/17/2020 - 12:45 Angora peak - North side Echo Summit Area Avalanche Observation Public
01/17/2020 - 11:15 Waterhouse Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Soft sastrugi on SE slope near the summit Compact car size cornice that broke easily from behind the small tree. Another easily broken cornice. Shooting cracks in wind slab terrain. Professional Observer
01/17/2020 - 11:00 North side of Independence Lake Independence Lake Area Avalanche Observation 18" crown 36" crown , Public
01/17/2020 - 11:00 Deep Creek ridge Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
01/17/2020 - 10:30 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Blowing Snow Wind slab Avalanche Shooting cracks Cornice drop Snow pit Professional Observer
01/17/2020 - 08:00 Jakes Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation ECTP22 on the faceted rain crust. The fracture along the crust was notably clean upon further inspection of the pit. Public
01/16/2020 - 16:30 Brockway Summit Sawtooth Ridge to Tahoe City Snowpack Observation ECTN22 a few inches above the faceted raincrust marked in orange. PST breaking vertically at 15 and 30cm marked in orange. Public
01/16/2020 - 16:15 Ward canyon Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation ECTP-17 @ 105cm / HS 140 Skin track re-filled after 1 hour Educator
Tahoe Mountain School
01/16/2020 - 14:00 Rubicon Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Very minor cracking down to the Jan 4 crust. Forecaster
01/16/2020 - 13:00 Castle Peak/Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Small cornice drops and ski cuts produced limited loose dry sluffing of upper new snow. ECTP-21 on faceted snow below Jan 4 rain crust. NW aspect, 8000', near treeline terrain. Weak snow below Jan 4 rain crust.  Storm snow from today along with recent storm snow on top Forecaster
01/16/2020 - 01:45 Waterhouse Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Public
01/15/2020 - 16:00 Donner Ridge Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Public
01/15/2020 - 15:30 Powder house Meadow Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Educator
Lake Tahoe Community College - Wilderness Education