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 http://www.snowpilot.org/. 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
03/14/2019 - 15:30 Peter Leh Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Guide
Alpine Skills International (ASI)
03/15/2019 - 12:45 Hidden Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation NE aspect side of summit ridge. ECTN on wind slab. NE aspect, above treeline terrain. P hard slab over 1F hard older rounds. SW aspect side of summit ridge. ECTN on wind slab. SW aspect, above treeline terrain. 1F+ hard slab over 4F+ older rounds. Glide crack Wet surface snow at about 7,000' on SE aspect micro feature. Pinwheels on SE aspect at about 8,400'. Forecaster
03/15/2019 - 13:45 Sunrise Bowl Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Slight wind effect on flat terrain Wind scour on NW aspect Approximately 10ft tall cornice on NW face of bowl Weak interface at 4-6in depth Public
03/16/2019 - 11:00 Mt. Judah Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Thin surface melt-freeze layer over dry snow (not yet a corn setup). Thin surface melt-freeze layer over dry snow (not yet a corn setup). Wet snow over dry snow without a melt-freeze crust in between. Small surface hoar on N aspect terrain near Mt. Judah summit. Breakable crust on N aspect around 7,100'. Forecaster
03/16/2019 - 11:15 Slide mountain Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation S and SE aspects on Mt. Rose proper as seen from Slide Mtn. Public
03/16/2019 - 11:30 Jakes Peak South Side West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Not corn, but decently soft. A steady stream of skiers helped reduce the size of any loose wet sloughs Corn snow at noon at 6,700 feet starting to get soft. Public
03/16/2019 - 12:15 West face of Johnson canyon Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Educator
Alpine Skills International (ASI)
03/16/2019 - 13:00 Red Lake Peak Avalanche Observation Public
03/16/2019 - 13:00 Johnson Canyon West Face Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Guide
Alpine Skills International (ASI)
03/17/2019 - 11:00 Stevens Peak Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Above 8600 feet on open east facing terrain the snow was very close to corn. A few shaded gullies held more wintry snow. Professional Observer
03/17/2019 - 11:00 Upper Ginny Lake drainage. Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Thin melt freeze crust over dry snow on flat terrain at 8,350'. Thin melt-freeze crust over dry snow on SE aspect at 9,550'. Same thin melt-freeze crust over dry snow on SE aspect at 9,550'. Shallow wet snow over dry snow on SE aspect at 9,600'. Dry snow previously unaffected by melt on NNW-N-NNE aspects above 8,500'. Forecaster
03/17/2019 - 12:00 Stevens Peak Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Large cornice over Stevens north bowl Public
03/17/2019 - 14:45 Donner Lake Run above Conifer Drive Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Public
03/17/2019 - 15:00 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Wet surface snow at lower elevation Roller balls of various sizes on South face East facing cornices with roller balls Thin ice crust forming across surface High elevation trees holding their N facing snow Cornices on North bowl of castle Public
03/18/2019 - 10:45 Janine's Ridge Desolation Wilderness Area (including Emerald Bay) Snowpack Observation Cold wintry snow lingered in a few shady high elevation zones. In sunny areas several inches of transitioning wet snow was present by late morning. Many steep sunny slopes had evidence of recent previous loose wet avalanche activity. Towards the end of our tour around 2pm, we found a slope with fully wet and weak snow. My pole is fully sunk into the weak snow. Professional Observer

Pages

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