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
03/13/2018 - 11:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Large pinwheels triggered by ski kicks at the top of the slope on a ENE aspect @ 8000 ft. Loose wet sluff mixed with large pinwheels on an E aspect @ 7400 ft. Forecaster
02/03/2016 - 10:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
12/06/2017 - 14:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Heavily wind scoured E aspect near summit. No snow remaining for future NE wind transport.2mECTP result along top of old nsf layer. Forecaster
02/24/2017 - 10:45 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Educator
Donner Summit Avalanche Seminars
02/17/2017 - 11:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Wind loading and cornice formation on W aspect from the SE winds.Small reactive wind slab on W aspect, 8200', 2-6'' deep.Cracking and shooting cracks on wind loaded test slopes. Forecaster
02/26/2018 - 12:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Cracking along ridge line Steep below tree line test slope displayed minimal cohesion in response to kicking. Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
02/25/2017 - 13:04 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
02/02/2017 - 11:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Storm Slab.  4'' deep, 7900', NE aspect.
Debris from storm slab (D1).
Storm slab, 4'' deep, 7900', NE aspect.
Wind Slab, 4-8'' deep, 8100', E aspect, 38 degree slope.
Forecaster
01/19/2016 - 12:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Forecaster
01/22/2018 - 11:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Small cracking on above a ENE wind-loaded slope near the summit of AndesiteSkier-triggered pinwheels at 8000 ft. Forecaster
12/14/2016 - 11:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Rain runnels existed up to Peak level (8200'). Forecaster
01/03/2017 - 12:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Natural wind slab avalanche
Shooting cracks in wind loaded terrain near natural avalanche.
Forecaster
02/16/2017 - 11:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Split-board kicks triggered a refrigerator sized cornice failure onto the wind loaded test slope. This resulted in a 12-14 inch deep wind slab failure.
The other side of the wind slab that resulted from the cornice drop.
Wind slab cracking in an undercut wind-loaded slope
Forecaster
04/16/2018 - 11:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Small wind slab triggered by large cornice drop on a ENE facing test slope at 8040 ft. See video. Small 1 to 4 inch slab triggered on an E facing test slope @ 8040 ft. that had just received a short period of sun-exposure The other side of the small slab triggered on the E facing test slope. New snow and some wind-loading filling in the skin track @ 8160 ft. About 30 cm (1 ft) of new snow resting on top of a moist crust on top of wet snow in a meadow at 7500 ft. Forecaster
12/26/2016 - 10:10 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster

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