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
12/06/2017 - 10:00 Frog Lake Ridge Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
Professional Observer
12/10/2016 - 17:00 Elephants Back Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
Looking down on the slide from the bench.
Looking up and slightly south from the bench.
Many refrigerator blocks of strong cohesive snow where present in the debris. This block travelled approximated 200 feet.
Three different crown step down features present here. Snow was blowing in and about a foot of wind drifted snow makes the lowest crown appear smaller than it was.
Excavating the lowest crown. The base of this was ice and ground with facets present.
The toe of the debris pile from the side.
Looking up at the slide.
Professional Observer
01/27/2018 - 08:00 Midway between Lincoln and Anderson Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Small, wide slab avalanche just below the Crest
Same slide from skier's left edge
12/26/2016 - 12:30 North side Ralston Echo Summit Area Avalanche Observation
12/31/2016 - 09:30 Bronco Chutes Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation
01/04/2017 - 13:00 Andesite Ridge Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Partially covered up avalanche debris.
Natural avalanche on NE-E aspect wrapping around rock feature.  125' wide x 200' long.
Wind slab avalanche with up to 3' crown.  Covered in by additional snow.
01/04/2017 - 15:00 Andesite Ridge Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Partially filled in crown and covered debris
01/10/2017 - 15:00 Deep Creek Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Avalanche Observation
Overview of the slide
The climbers left flank
Another overview
Debris and knocked over trees.
01/20/2017 - 15:45 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
D2 Wind slab avalanche triggered by a small cornice piece
Small avalanche triggered by a larger piece of cornice
Cracking in the storm snow on in below treeline terrain
03/03/2018 - 09:00 Powderhouse Bowl Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Avalanche Observation
Crown and some debris.
Cracks extending from the crown, but slope below did not slide.
Professional Observer
02/10/2017 - 21:00 Powderhouse Ridge Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Avalanche Observation
Looking up towards the crown.
Looking down on the path and debris.
Looking across the crown.
Hand hardness of the crown down to the rain crust.
Professional Observer
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
02/18/2017 - 14:55 Stevens Peak Area Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Avalanche Observation Public
01/16/2016 - 18:00 Drifter Ridge Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
02/23/2017 - 13:00 SE chute abover lower angora lake Echo Summit Area Avalanche Observation


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