Daily Winter Weather Report
Date: Sunday - February 06, 2011
|Station||Max Temp||Min Temp||Pres Temp||New Snow||Depth||Sky||Present Conditions|
|Road Section||Status||Conditions||Public Access / Info|
|Gardiner to Mammoth||YR||Good||STR|
|Mammoth to Tower||YR||Good||STR|
|Tower to NE Entrance||YR||Fair||STR|
|Beartooth Highway||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Canyon to Lake||Open||Poor||Oversnow|
|Firehole Canyon Drive||Open||-||Oversnow - Snowcoaches only in the morning|
|Grant to South Entrance||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Junction to Chief Joseph Hwy||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Lake to East Entrance||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Lake to West Thumb||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Madison to Old Faithful||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Madison to West Yellowstone||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Mammoth to Norris||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Norris to Canyon||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Norris to Madison||Open||Good||Oversnow|
|Old Faithful to Grant||Open||Good||Oversnow|
YR=Year Round / NR=No Restrictions / STA=Snow Tires Advised / STR=Snow Tires Required
* NOTE: CLOSED FOR THE SEASON.
# Poor road conditions - bare spots and melting snow - Restricted to Snowcoaches Only.
The park service plowing schedule for roads for the spring season.
******** FOR CURRENT ROAD INFORMATION PLEASE CALL 307-344-2117 ********
by the National Weather Service Riverton, WY
Rest Of Today...Cloudy. Scattered snow showers late in the morning...then chance of snow in the afternoon. Highs 17°F to 23°F. West winds around 15 mph late in the afternoon. Chance of snow 40 percent.
Tonight...Breezy. Snow likely in the evening...then snow after midnight. Areas of blowing snow after midnight. Snow accumulation of 4 to 5 inches. Lows 11°F to 17°F. Southwest winds 15 to 25 mph. Chance of snow 90 percent.
Monday...Breezy. Areas of blowing snow in the morning. Snow. Snow accumulation of 3 to 5 inches. Highs 18°F to 24°F. West winds 15 to 25 mph. Chance of snow near 100 percent.
Monday Night...Much colder. Cloudy. Snow in the evening...then chance of snow after midnight. Snow accumulation around 1 inch. Total snow accumulation 8 to 11 inches. Lows -1°F to -7°F. Chance of snow 80 percent.
Tuesday...Partly cloudy. Occasional flurries. Highs 10°F to 16°F. Lowest wind chill readings -13°F to -23°F in the morning.
Tuesday Night...Colder. Partly cloudy. Patchy freezing fog. Lows -9°F to -19°F. Wind chill readings -33°F to -43°F.
Wednesday...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Highs 11°F to 17°F. Lowest wind chill readings -28°F to -38°F in the morning.
Wednesday Night...Mostly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Lows -6°F to 0°F.
Thursday...Not as cold. Mostly cloudy. Highs 20°F to 26°F.
Thursday Night...Mostly cloudy. Lows 3°F to 9°F.
Friday...Mostly cloudy. Highs 23°F to 29°F.
Friday Night...Partly cloudy. Lows 7°F to 13°F.
Saturday...Mostly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Highs 25°F to 31°F.
|* * * Snow Depth Totals as reported at SNOTELs * * *|
|Station||Depth (inches)||Station||Depth (inches)|
|Black Bear||92||Parker Peak||77|
|Blackwater||58||Snake River Station||28|
|Evening Star||78||Sylvan Road||42|
|Fisher Creek||97||Thumb Divide||46|
|Grassy Lake||78||Two Ocean Plateau||69|
|Lewis Lake Divide||76||West Yellowstone||40|
|Madison Plateau||62||Whiskey Creek||50|
from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center - February 06, 2011 - this report is by Eric Knoff
Like the Packers running over the Steelers – potent weather events have marched right into southwest Montana, arriving on a strong Northwest flow. Since yesterday morning, the Bridger Range, northern Gallatin Range and mountains around Cooke City have received 10-12 inches of new snow. The mountains around Big Sky have picked up 5-6 inches, while the mountains around West Yellowstone have picked up 2-3 inches. Winds are currently blowing out of the West-north-west at 15-20 mph and will continue along these lines for the remainder of the day. Mountain temperatures are ranging from the single digits to low teens and will gradually climb into the mid 20s by this afternoon. Snow will taper off by this morning, but another round of moisture will move back into our region by early tomorrow. Another foot of snow is possible in the northern mountains by tomorrow evening.
Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:
The Bridger Range, the northern Madison and northern Gallatin Ranges, the mountains around Cooke City and the Washburn Range:
During the early part of last week, warm sunny days and cold clear nights helped to develop surface weaknesses - mainly surface hoar and near surface facets with some facet/crust combinations developing on solar aspects. Although warm temperatures during the later part of this past week wreaked havoc on these layers at lower elevations, isolated pockets of surface hoar and a wider distribution of near surface facets will likely be found on slopes above 8,000 feet. These layers are now under a tremendous amount of stress - being buried by 12-18 inches of new snow. Slopes that contain buried weak layers have the potential for producing larger slides capable of propagating long distances.
With the new snow and wind, the most pressing avalanche hazard today will be fresh soft slabs that have formed along the leeward side of upper elevation ridges. No weak layer will be necessary for avalanches to occur in wind loaded terrain. Keep your eyes and ears open for shooting cracks and loud wumphing sounds; these are obvious clues the snowpack is unstable. Also, lower elevation sub-ridges and gullies have been cross loaded by Northwest winds, making backcountry travel tricky. Yesterday, the Yellowstone Club Ski Patrol found cross loaded slopes to be very reactive to both ski cuts and explosives. With the combination of wind loading and buried weak layers, careful snowpack evaluation, cautious route finding, and good communication will all be necessary when traveling in avalanche terrain.
Today, a HIGH Avalanche Danger exist on all wind loaded slopes. Slopes that have not received a wind load have CONSIDERABLE Avalanche Danger.
The southern Madison and southern Gallatin Ranges and the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone:
You can't win them all. Like the Jets stomping the Patriots, the southern Madison Range and Lionhead area near West Yellowstone have been upset by this latest storm - receiving less than half the amount of snow as the northern ranges. This however, does not make the southern ranges exempt from avalanches. Surface hoar and near surface facets have likely survived better in these areas due to cooler temperatures, and new snow has fallen – just not as much. The one element the southern ranges have received is wind; and as we know it only takes a few inches of snow combined with strong winds to make heightened avalanche conditions. Today, wind loaded slopes are the primary avalanche concern. Look out for rounded pillows, specifically near ridgelines, and always test smaller hills before committing to larger, more dangerous slopes.
Today, a CONSIDERABLE Avalanche Danger exists on all wind loaded slopes. Slopes that have not received a wind load have a MODERATE Avalanche Danger.
If you have any snowpack or avalanche observations, drop them a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 406-587-6984.
For detailed Avalanche Terms utilized here, please see the Avalanche Glossary.
West Yellowstone: Beacon Park Operational
Skiing or riding near West Yellowstone? Test your beacon skills at a beacon park near the old airport where you can search for pre-placed beacons switched on/off by a control panel. Look for it by orange snow fence and signage just south of the snow cross track.
9th ANNUAL KING AND QUEEN OF THE RIDGE
The 9th Annual King and Queen of the Ridge will be held at Bridger Bowl on Saturday, February 12. ALL proceeds go to the Friends of the Avalanche Center who use the money to promote avalanche education in southwest Montana. Last winter we taught 64 classes reaching over 4,900 people. You can help raise money to continue this education in 2 ways:
1). Get pledges and hike the ridge. You don't have to do 20 laps – you can get flat pledges and hike just once! Or you can test your mettle and try and break John Yarington's record of 29 laps in 5 hours.
2). Sponsor someone. If you don't have someone to sponsor, consider sponsoring the GNFAC since we'll be hiking for dollars. Click Here for more information and registration forms.
Information provided by Yellowstone National Park, National Weather Service and Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center
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by John William Uhler
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