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
02/21/2019 - 10:30 Ridge to Talking Mt. Echo Summit Area Snowpack Observation Cracking in front of ski tips. Cracking and small wind slab slide on test slope. Sastrugi on ridge. Professional Observer
02/21/2019 - 09:30 Highway Patrol Chutes Sawtooth Ridge to Tahoe City Snowpack Observation No visible signs of wind effect in the most recent snow. Public
02/21/2019 - 07:30 Jake’s Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Surface hoar Graupel Public
02/20/2019 - 12:30 Silver Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Newly fallen graupel. Wind features pointing both directions with cornices in the background. Our skin track refilled within an hour from a combination of new snow and light wind loading. New snow had barely covered the previously scoured surfaces leaving variable dust on crust conditions in some exposed areas. Settlement cracks indicating consolidation in the recent snow. Forecaster
02/20/2019 - 11:00 Polaris Point Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation Periodic snow showers S1 to S5. S5 in this photo at 11:15 am. Forecaster
02/20/2019 - 08:00 Ward Canyon driveway all the way up to top of Stanford Rock area. Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation Public
02/19/2019 - 14:00 Waterhouse Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Surface hoar Cracked settlement cone Satstrugi Public
02/19/2019 - 13:45 Trimmer Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Public
02/19/2019 - 13:30 Donner Summit Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Skier triggered shooting crack on a low angle W aspect Skier cracking on a low angle slope wind-loaded by NE winds and previously undercut by the skin track. Variable wind scoured surfaces with exposed rain crust in some areas. Large surface hoar that was laying flat on many sheltered N-NE-E aspects. Forecaster
02/19/2019 - 13:00 Deep Creek Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Very small loose dry on NE aspect, 46 degree slope angle, below treeline terrain. Pockets of upright surface hoar on shaded northerly aspects. Skinning through this S aspect wind slab produced no cracking. Minor wind scouring and blowing snow on the summit of Deep Creek Peak. Skin track refill after about 5 min on top of Deep Creek Peak. Wind scouring down to exposed rain crust near the ridgetop. Forecaster
02/19/2019 - 11:15 North shoulder of Judah Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Shooting crack in a small windslab Guide
Alpenglow Expeditions
02/19/2019 - 10:15 Flagpole Peak Echo Summit Area Snowpack Observation Sastrugi near ridgeline on Flagpole. Signs of settlement around trees Interesting evidence of previous avalanche activity. Interesting evidence of previous avalanche activity. The areas that slid were still soft, but less soft than areas that had not slid previously. Professional Observer
02/18/2019 - 15:15 Schallenberger Ridge Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation surface hoar Public
02/18/2019 - 14:00 Herlan / Bear Scratch East Shore Area Snowpack Observation heavy wind, sastrugi, wind loading near summit pockets of wind loading, sastrugi, wind slabs Public
02/18/2019 - 13:30 Lincoln Ridge Yuba Pass Area Snowpack Observation Cornice drop on a test slope that did not trigger any slab instabilities but did cause a sluff. Rain crust exposed by scouring on the ridge. Settlement cone on a tree in below treeline terrain. Deep crack behind a cornice that has pulled away from the ridge. ECTN on a sheltered slope. The rain crust / rain layer has started to refreeze but still had some wet snow at the bottom of the layer. Forecaster


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