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
11/27/2017 - 12:00 Shoulder of Elephant Back above large shelf Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
I was exiting above the rock in the center.
Looking down form where I exited the ridge. Notice the crack
Looking up. The highest part went the farthest, but was mostly sluff
11/11/2015 - 13:30 Elephant's Hump Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
01/10/2017 - 11:30 Negro Canyon Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
Intentially skier trigger wind slab on small test slope
Wind slab failing within storm snow about 4-6'' above the old snow rain crust interface.
01/11/2017 - 12:00 Mt. Rose Highway Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation
Relay Peak.  East Face, 10,200'.
Fireplug.  E/SE. 9200'.
Rose Knob/3rd Creek. S aspect. 9400'.
Incline Lake Peak.  SE aspect, 9200'.
Mt. Houghton.  S/SE aspect, 10,000'.
Mt. Houghton.  SE aspect, 8800'.
02/07/2017 - 04:00 Frog Lake Cliffs Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
02/12/2017 - 12:30 Due south of Rose Knob Peak Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation
Aftermath of Avalanche near Rose Knob Peak.
Avalanche Path in Yellow.
01/13/2016 - 23:31 North aspect near Tinker Knob Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation Public
02/21/2017 - 01:00 Corkscrew slide path Desolation Wilderness Area (including Emerald Bay) Avalanche Observation
Toe of the debris.
Huge blocks in the debris.
Looking up from the highest point of the debris.
Looking down on the debris from higher on the edge of the Corkscrew path.
Professional Observer
03/02/2017 - 13:20 North Bowl Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
02/03/2016 - 23:19 Symphony Bowl-South Slide Mtn Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation
04/14/2017 - 09:45 East of frog lake Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
03/14/2016 - 09:00 North Side Castle Peak Donner Summit Area Avalanche Observation
11/16/2017 - 09:00 Hourglass Bowl Mount Rose Area Avalanche Observation
12/06/2017 - 10:00 Frog Lake Ridge Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
Professional Observer
12/10/2016 - 17:00 Elephants Back Carson Pass Area Avalanche Observation
Looking down on the slide from the bench.
Looking up and slightly south from the bench.
Many refrigerator blocks of strong cohesive snow where present in the debris. This block travelled approximated 200 feet.
Three different crown step down features present here. Snow was blowing in and about a foot of wind drifted snow makes the lowest crown appear smaller than it was.
Excavating the lowest crown. The base of this was ice and ground with facets present.
The toe of the debris pile from the side.
Looking up at the slide.
Professional Observer


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