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 Videos Observation made by
12/19/2017 - 09:30 Silver Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Minimal snow coverage below 7500 ft.Scoured surfaces on exposed slopes in above treeline terrain.Near surface facets. Forecaster
12/18/2017 - 15:00 Frog Lake Ridge Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Professional Observer
12/18/2017 - 13:00 just S of Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Educator
Donner Summit Avalanche Seminars
12/18/2017 - 12:45 Ophir Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Minor wind scouring on the top 100' of peak.  Large boulders and trees still poking out of snowpack. Forecaster
12/18/2017 - 11:00 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Exposed firm rain crust on an open slope.Wind affected surfaces on a NW aspectCoverage on the N side of Castle. Forecaster
12/17/2017 - 12:30 Lincoln Ridge Yuba Pass Area Snowpack Observation Variable wind scoured snow surfaces in open N-NE facing areas at 7600 ft.Firm rain crust exposed by wind scouring on a NE aspect near the ridgeline.Snow coverage at 7200 ft. Near surface facets on northerly aspects. Forecaster
12/17/2017 - 12:07 Andesite Ridge Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Surface Conditions mix of sustrugi and melt freeze crusts Educator
Tahoe Mountain School
12/16/2017 - 12:30 Incline Lake Peak/Slab Cliffs Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Strong to Gale force NE winds moving minimal amounts of snow to S side of ridgeline.Small cracking just off ridgeline from minor wind loading on S aspects. Forecaster
12/15/2017 - 14:00 Trimmer Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation 1-2 cm Surface Hoar observed in open areas below 8000 feet.Treed areas above 8000 feet had sticky wet snow by noon. Professional Observer
12/15/2017 - 12:00 Elephants Back/Frog Lake Cliffs Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Soft near surface facets in the trees with wind scoured surfaces below ridge. Forecaster
12/14/2017 - 16:00 West side Relay Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation , , Public
12/14/2017 - 11:00 Andesite Peak and S aspect of Castle Pk Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
12/13/2017 - 15:27 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
12/13/2017 - 12:00 Chickadee Ridge Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation  Inversion conditions allowing cold air and clouds to remain trapped at the lower elevations.1 inch of soft wet corn snow on top of a supportable melt-freeze crust on a S aspect at 8850 ft. around 11:30 am.Near-surface facets from a north aspect at 9000 ft. that are starting to round. Forecaster
12/13/2017 - 11:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Pit location adjacent to and above pit from Dec 6. (Skis/pack in old pit.) Forecaster


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