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
02/11/2019 - 11:45 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Blowing snow along a sub-ridge of Tamarack Peak. The arrow is pointing to a person standing on the ridge. Skier-triggered cracks in a wind-loaded test slope that was undercut. Wind-scoured features along a ridge. Macro ripples (aka tiger stripes) across a slope near the summit of Tamarack. Our skin track refilled quickly with wind loading. Forecaster
02/10/2019 - 14:00 Poison Canyon Bear Valley Area Snowpack Observation Guide
California Ski Guides
02/10/2019 - 14:00 Sagehen Hills Snowpack Observation Public
02/10/2019 - 13:15 Below Poulsen's Peak, Olympic Valley Sawtooth Ridge to Tahoe City Snowpack Observation Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
02/10/2019 - 12:30 Andesite Ridge Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Active wind-loading on Donner Summit Small skier triggered cornice failure causing a loose snow sluff on a test slope. Skin track refilled by wind loading. ECTN on the flank of a natural avalanche that occurred last night. Forecaster
02/10/2019 - 11:30 Cottonwood Hill Sawtooth Ridge to Tahoe City Snowpack Observation ECTN14 @ 45cm down. After 30 taps and no failure, we pulled on the back of the column and it broke cleanly. Public
02/10/2019 - 08:00 Hope Valley & Waterhouse Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Public
02/10/2019 - 02:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Forecaster
02/09/2019 - 23:00 Ridge between Forks of Coldstream Creeks Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Avalanche Observation Public
02/09/2019 - 15:00 Brockway Summit Sawtooth Ridge to Tahoe City Snowpack Observation Small cracking in a very soft slab. The larger cracks we saw later were approximately the same depth. Public
02/09/2019 - 13:15 Round Valley Bear Valley Area Avalanche Observation Guide
California Ski Guides
02/09/2019 - 12:30 Shirley Canyon Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Avalanche Observation Low vis photo of shooting cracks and small wind slab avalanche, skier triggered Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
02/09/2019 - 12:00 Carpenter Ridge Independence Lake Area Snowpack Observation Reactive wind slab avalanche intentionally triggered by ski kick.  N aspect, 8600', wind loaded 35 degree slope.  D1 R4, 100' wide x 50' downslope. Other side of wind slab avalanche Avalanche debris down into trees. Skin track refill was almost immediate in near treeline terrain and very fast in below treeline terrain. Shooting cracks up to 20-30' in wind loaded terrain. Storm slab development in below treeline terrain with cracking around skis. Forecaster
02/09/2019 - 12:00 Horse Meadow Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Professional Observer
02/09/2019 - 11:30 Incline Peak Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation Public

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