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
12/01/2018 - 12:15 Gareth Feldstein Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation Wind loading - small cornice 125cm weak top layer roughly 35cm Checking the crust @ 55cm - 30cm Crust @ 55cm Joe - extended column test (Low angle probably prevented negative test results) Wind loading along the ridge-line Lots of wind on the ridge-line Public
12/06/2018 - 11:45 Lincoln Ridge Yuba Pass Area Snowpack Observation Fog conditions below 7,700'. Sunny skies above the inversion layer. Rimed surface snow and plenty of snow available on W aspects for future wind transport. Rimed surface snow. Rimed surface snow. Forecaster
12/10/2018 - 11:45 N End of Janine's Ridge Desolation Wilderness Area (including Emerald Bay) Snowpack Observation 5cm Windslab Public
12/14/2018 - 10:30 Anderson Ridge Donner Summit Area Snowpack Observation High winds but minimal local ridge top transport wind scoured and side loading below the ridge thin and non-reactive wind loading at 10:30a Public
12/18/2018 - 15:00 After Party Independence Lake Area Avalanche Observation Public
12/22/2018 - 11:30 Elephant's Back Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Professional Observer
12/28/2018 - 12:00 Rubicon Peak West Shore Area Snowpack Observation Blowing snow over Jobs/Freel as seen from Hwy 89. Coverage below 7200 ft. remains sparse. Forecaster
01/04/2019 - 11:15 Lincoln Ridge Yuba Pass Area Snowpack Observation NE aspect wind scoured terrain at/just above treeline. Exposed rain crust on upper start zone, wind scoured mid slope, unconsolidated snow at treeline. Established tree well hazard if the forecasted 1-2+ feet of new snow verifies. Forecaster
01/06/2019 - 12:30 Tamarack Peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation One of many easily triggered windslabs today Shooting cracks were common today Educator
Tahoe Mountain School
01/08/2019 - 15:00 Shirley Canyon Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Avalanche Observation Educator
Alpenglow Expeditions
01/12/2019 - 11:00 Needle Peak Cabin Creek, Deep Creek, or Pole Creek Area Snowpack Observation Strong winds and wind transport on Needle Peak this morning Some windslab cracking near the ridgeline A fairly large old crown at Needle Lake. Debris have since been buried under new/blowing snow Some roller balls at 2:30 on south aspects Public
01/15/2019 - 13:15 Incline lake peak Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Calm to light winds on Ridge North aspect unsupported convex test slope loose dry/sluff Very small loose dry on 40 degree east aspect Public
11/29/2018 - 12:30 Relay Peak Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation Small windslab along ridge line Public
12/03/2018 - 12:00 Slab Cliffs Mount Rose Area Snowpack Observation Forecaster
12/08/2018 - 13:00 Elephant's Hump Carson Pass Area Snowpack Observation Professional Observer


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