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
03/14/2017 - 13:00 West Ridge of Mt. Tallac Desolation Wilderness Area (including Emerald Bay) Avalanche Observation
Loose wet avalanche size D1.5-D2 triggered by natural cornice collapse.
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.
02/05/2016 - 12:00 Silver Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
03/06/2016 - 12:00 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
11/25/2015 - 13:45 Wildflower Ridge Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
11/28/2017 - 11:45 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Blowing snow near the summit of Castle Peak as observed from vicinity of noted lat/long. Forecaster
03/29/2018 - 10:00 Mt. Judah Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Runnels in the snow surface indicating drainage and melting. 2 to 3 cm of corn snow on a supportable crust at 10:15 am at 7800 ft. on a SE aspect Wet snow below the frozen melt freeze crust on a SSE aspect Wind scoured surfaces on a NE aspect Breakable crust on a sheltered N aspect at 7800 ft. Forecaster
04/01/2016 - 11:30 Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
02/23/2017 - 13:00 Cinder Cone Sawtooth Ridge to Tahoe City Snowpack Observation ECTN results at two locations in the pit. The rain crust from the start of the storm is at the bottom and the snow below that was still wet. NW aspect at 7500 ft. Small Loose dry snow sluff on a sheltered NNW aspect at 7300 ft. Forecaster
01/27/2018 - 10:00 Chickadee Ridge Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Blowing snow near treeline.More blowing snow near treeline.Test slope wind slab failure 10' wide near noted lat/long.Some of the wind slab cracking giving clues to potential instability. Forecaster
04/15/2017 - 15:30 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Intentionally skier triggered loose wet avalanche on test slope entraining about the top 1 foot of the snowpack.Closer up view of same loose wet test slope avalanche.Skier triggered roller ball, ~2 ft diameter.Skier triggered roller ball, ~2.5 ft diameter. Forecaster
03/14/2018 - 13:45 Powderhouse Peak Luther Pass Area (including Job and Freel) Snowpack Observation Skier triggered shooting crack on a wind-loaded NE facing test slope near 9000 ft. Small skier triggered wind slab on a N facing wind-loaded test slope near 9200 ft. Forecaster
02/11/2016 - 11:30 Red Lake Peak Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
03/10/2016 - 12:00 Barker Pass Blackwood Canyon or Ward Canyon Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
02/10/2017 - 12:00 Andesite Peak Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Cornice kicks on test slopes produced limited loose snow with no signs of slab propagation.2x ECTN's on wind slabs off summit.  8200', E aspect. Forecaster


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