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 button above.
Date and time of observation or avalanche occurrence Location Region Observation Type Photos Snowpack, Avalanche, Weather Videos Snowpit videos (tests, etc) Observation made by
03/28/2020 - 11:00 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation 1 of several ECTN results on the old snow/new snow interface. Breakable crust conditions developing on E/SE aspects at lower elevations. Forecaster
01/06/2020 - 11:45 Rose Knob Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Upper Rose Knob with supportable snow conditions above 8000'. At 8000' and below, deeper wet snow existed by 12 noon. Previous small point releases on SW aspects near 8000'. Previous small additional loose wet activity. Jan 4 rain crust.  Variable from strong and up to 2'' thick to thin and breakable.  Facets developing below the crust. Forecaster
03/14/2020 - 11:00 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Broken sky with limited snowfall in the morning hours 3-4'' of wind blown snow on top of crust/facet combo. Cracking on small developing wind slab. Forecaster
12/03/2019 - 13:00 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Forecaster
04/27/2020 - 11:15 Mt. Houghton Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Lots of bare ground on true S aspect terrain looking towards Mount Rose proper. Supportable snow surface conditions during the morning hours on E-SE aspects. High level cloud cover did little to slow melt rates this morning. Forecaster
02/21/2020 - 11:00 Stoney Ridge West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Building the 10 cm artificial slab for the loaded PST. Surface faces and extremely thin, breakable crust made for decent travel conditions. Forecaster
01/24/2020 - 14:00 Far East Ridge of Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Scoured surfaces and raised tracks on an exposed slope. Wind effects on a moderately sheltered slope. Minor cracking on a wind-loaded test slope after it was undercut. Skier triggered collapse of an unsupported drift next to a creek that failed on the Jan 4 weakness. Forecaster
12/07/2019 - 11:45 Incline Lake Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Ridgetop area where SH had been seen on 12/6 and now observed buried on 12/7. Location of buried SH. Forecaster
12/27/2019 - 11:45 Silver Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation 15mm surface hoar in open below treeline terrain. Widespread surface hoar covering open below treeline avalanche terrain. Surface hoar on wind textured surface in ridgetop avalanche start zone. Ridgetop wind feature covered in surface hoar. More wind affected than 24 hours ago, but covered in surface hoar. Minor cracking at edge of ridgetop wind slab. Forecaster
03/01/2020 - 11:45 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Loose dry avalanche on a steep slope sheltered from the wind that entrained the new snow Forecaster
01/26/2020 - 16:00 Far East Ridge of Tamarack Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Small wind slab that cracked on when I kicked it. Wind scouring on the exposed ridge Forecaster
03/05/2020 - 10:45 Mt. Judah Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Melt freeze crust with some areas of transitional soft snow on east aspects. Transitional previous storm snow on east aspects in wind protected areas. Melting out rocks with running water on the south side of Judah. Forecaster
03/10/2020 - 12:00 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Coverage overview looking at raised tracks on the Hourglass and dirt on the south side of Rose. Wind features were widespread on exposed slopes in near and above treeline terrain Surface hoar and large stellars and plates on a sheltered NE aspect at 11 am Soft snow on a shady and sheltered below treeline N aspect Forecaster
01/08/2020 - 12:45 Silver Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Avalanche Observation
One of 5 intentionally triggered D1 wind slabs in near treeline terrain.
Another of 5 intentionally triggered D1 wind slabs in near treeline terrain.
12/19/2019 - 12:00 Elephants Hump Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation Looking north from the far climbers left flank, over 500' to the dead tree. Looking from the dead tree towards the climbersleft flank past the large rock midslope. Partially filled in crown line with avalanche debris below. On the far climbers right flank of avalanche Hard slab debris down into trees. Shooting cracks through lower angle terrain connecting the 2 steeper avalanche paths. Crown line profile on lower climbers left flank. 1' deep pencil hard wind slab. Forecaster


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