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
12/16/2018 - 11:45 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Wind Transport on Castle Ridge Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
01/14/2019 - 10:15 Chief Creek drainage Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Large surface hoar Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
12/24/2018 - 11:00 Donner Pass Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
01/18/2019 - 10:15 Shirley Canyon Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Minor wind slab cracking Large cornice drop, no slab failure Early stage settlement ring Roller Balls Profile Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
02/07/2019 - 14:00 Mt. Judah Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Surface hoar varied from 3 to 10mm in size on multiple aspects and elevations. Wind textured snow on the top 50' of Mt. Judah from recent NW-NE winds. Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
01/08/2019 - 11:00 Needle Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Minor cornice cracking Weak layer underneath a windslab Wind slab avalanche (~48hrs old) Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
12/03/2018 - 13:00 Rubicon peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Surface hoar around 7600ft/ NE Looking west into desolation Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
02/10/2019 - 14:00 Poison Canyon Bear Valley Area Snowpack Observation Guide
California Ski Guides
02/14/2019 - 13:15 Grouse rock Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation Rain runnels / S5 snowfall 15cm of new snow on top of rain crust/rain saturated snow grains Skin track filled in after 45 mintues Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
03/16/2019 - 13:00 Johnson Canyon West Face Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Guide
Alpine Skills International (ASI)
01/19/2019 - 11:15 Chief Creek drainage Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation buried surface hoar propagation saw test (pst 20/130 end) Snowpack settlement

20190119

Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
03/27/2019 - 13:45 Grouse Rock Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation Snow structure in top 60cm @ 8200ft NE aspect Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
01/09/2019 - 12:00 Wildflower Ridge Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation ECTN's in recent storm snow with no results on old faceted layer. Guide
Tahoe Mountain School
01/07/2019 - 12:00 Hidden Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation One of the many whumpfs we felt between 6900 and 8300 ft. This one propogated about 100 ft away from us in all directions and left small cracks like the one I am pointing at in the snow surface. Forecaster
01/11/2019 - 11:00 North Side Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Debris pile. Crown as see from the ridgetop to the east. Crown as see from the ridgetop to the east. Looking E along the crown at the point of the collapsed cornice. Spot where footprints close to the edge triggered the cornice collapse. Forecaster

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