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Daily Winter Weather Report

Date: Wednesday - 01 February 2012

Station Max Temp Min Temp Pres Temp New Snow Depth Sky Present Conditions
Canyon 30 11 12 2 35 OC Calm
East Entrance 32 4 6 1 32 SC Calm
Grant Village 30 7 30 T 48 OC Calm
Lake 29 11 13 .5 34 BC Calm
Lamar 36 7 11 0 12 OC Calm
Madison 29 10 10 0 21 OC Calm / Foggy
Mammoth 30 22 30 0 6 SC S@7-9mph
Old Faithful 28 7 7 T 31 BC Calm
Pahaska 26 14 14 T - OC Calm
Snake River 36 5 7 T 59 BC Calm
Soda Butte 22 4 4 T - OC Calm
Thumb Divide 21 13 13 0 - OC Calm
Tower 33 8 11 0 17 SC SW@1-3mph
West Entrance 26 14 26 0 32 SC Calm
BC=Broken Clouds / C=Clear / OC=Overcast / SC=Scattered Clouds / T=Trace
All Temperatures are in °F ~ All Snow Depths are in Inches

* * * Road Conditions * * *
Road Section Status Conditions Public Access / Info
Gardiner to Mammoth YR   Snow Tires Required
Mammoth to Tower YR   Snow Tires Required
Tower to NE Entrance YR   Snow Tires Required
Beartooth Highway CLOSED * CLOSED * CLOSED *
Canyon to Lake Open   All oversnow vehicles
Canyon to Tower CLOSED * CLOSED * CLOSED *
Firehole Canyon Drive CLOSED CLOSED CLOSED
Grant to South Entrance Open Good All oversnow vehicles
Junction to Chief Joseph Hwy CLOSED * CLOSED * CLOSED *
Lake to East Entrance Open   All oversnow vehicles
Lake to West Thumb Open   All oversnow vehicles
Madison to Old Faithful Open Good All oversnow vehicles
Madison to West Yellowstone Open Good All oversnow vehicles
Mammoth to Norris Open Good All oversnow vehicles
Norris to Canyon Open Good All oversnow vehicles
Norris to Madison Open Fair All oversnow vehicles
Old Faithful to Grant Open   All oversnow vehicles

YR = Open Year Round / NR = No Restrictions


# 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 ********


Yellowstone Seven Day Forecast on 01 February 2012
by the National Weather Service Riverton, Wyoming

Today...Cloudy. Slight chance of snow in the morning...then chance of snow in the afternoon. Highs 24°F to 30°F. Southwest winds around 15 mph in the late morning and afternoon. Chance of snow 30 percent.

Tonight...Snow in the evening...then snow likely after midnight. Snow accumulation around 2 inches. Lows 11°F to 17°F. Southwest winds around 15 mph early in the evening. Chance of snow 90 percent.

Thursday...Mostly cloudy. Chance of snow in the morning...then scattered snow showers in the afternoon. Highs 23°F to 29°F. Chance of snow 50 percent.

Thursday Night...Colder. Partly cloudy in the evening then clearing. Isolated snow showers. Lows 4°F to 10°F. Chance of snow 20 percent.

Friday...Mostly sunny. Highs 21°F to 27°F.

Friday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 5°F to 11°F.

Saturday...Mostly sunny. Highs 23°F to 29°F.

Saturday Night...Clear. Lows 1°F to 9°F.

Sunday...Sunny. Highs 27°F to 33°F.

Sunday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 6°F to 12°F.

Monday...Mostly sunny. Highs 28°F to 34°F.

Monday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 9°F to 15°F.

Tuesday...Mostly sunny. Highs 26°F to 32°F.

Snowflake Hazardous Weather Snowflake Gibbon Falls Forecast Snowflake Mammoth Forecast Snowflake Midway Forecast Snowflake Norris Forecast Snowflake Old Faithful Forecast Snowflake

* * * Snow Depth Totals as reported at SNOTELs * * *
Station Depth (inches) Station Depth (inches)
Black Bear 82 Parker Peak 58
Blackwater 61 Snake River Station 52
Canyon 40 Sylvan Lake 46
Evening Star 75 Sylvan Road 37
Fisher Creek 87 Thumb Divide 44
Grassy Lake 77 Two Ocean Plateau 85
Lewis Lake Divide 72 West Yellowstone 30
Madison Plateau 53 Whiskey Creek 40
Northeast Entrance 29 Wolverine 28

Avalanche Information
from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center - 01 February 2012 - 7:30 am - this report is by Doug Chabot. This advisory does not apply to operating ski areas.

Mountain Weather

Late yesterday most mountain locations picked up 1 to 2 inches, although West Yellowstone and the northern Gallatin Range were missed. Temperatures are near 10 degrees Fahrenheit this morning after reaching the mid 20's Fahrenheit yesterday and winds are west to southwest at 15-25 mph. Today will become progressively cloudy as a weather disturbance moves in from the coast. By tonight winds will be light, but shift west to north. By tomorrow morning I expect 1 to 2 inches in the northern mountains and 2 to 4 inches in the southern ranges.

Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:

The southern Madison and southern Gallatin Ranges, the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone and the mountains around Cooke City:

The mountains around Cooke City, as well as the other southern ranges, have dangerous avalanche conditions. Outside Cooke City a layer of weak, faceted snow is buried 2 to 3 feet deep on many slopes. I found this last week on south facing slopes, like Scotch Bonnet, where this layer formed on an ice crust. On other aspects it's not as widespread, but wherever it exists you'll likely trigger avalanches. Natural avalanches this weekend and a small snowmobiler triggered slide near Daisy Pass yesterday, illustrate the instability. The slide was reported 70 feet wide, 2 feet deep, and 120 feet long.

I toured with my partners into Bacon Rind in the southern Madison Range yesterday. I was expecting to find unstable snow and was not disappointed. Large collapses and shooting cracks made stability assessment easy; it was poor. The snowpack here is only three feet deep with over half of it made up of weak, sugary facets, which are not getting stronger or more supportable. I sunk to the ground every time I stepped out of my skis. A layer of feathery surface hoar buried a foot deep is consistently collapsing and propagating fractures. We dug into one of these cracks and did a few stability tests, further confirming its touchy conditions. For today, the Avalanche Danger is rated CONSIDERABLE on all slopes.

The Bridger Range and northern Madison Range:

Mark snowmobiled into Buck Ridge south of Big Sky yesterday. He saw a large crown line on a northeast facing slope that released a few days ago from wind-loading. He rode miles, dug six pits and surmised that although there is plenty of weak snow (depth hoar and facets), slopes with a big enough wind-load to avalanche are isolated. In the Bridger Range a weak, faceted, thin snowpack abounds. A few slopes have thicker slabs of windblown snow capping these facets and should be avoided. Given the weak snow structure, it's still possible to trigger an avalanche today and the Avalanche Danger is rated MODERATE on all slopes.

The northern Gallatin Range:

The northern Gallatin Range is not plagued by widespread layers of faceted snow. Eric was in Hyalite yesterday and found dense powder in protected areas and variable wind affected snow at higher elevations. Slopes with a recent wind-load are suspect as are steeper slopes, especially those with a thinner, weaker snowpack like Mount Ellis or Wheeler. For today, the Avalanche Danger is rated MODERATE on any wind-loaded slope and also on any slope steeper than 35 degrees. All other slopes have a LOW Avalanche Danger.

The next advisory tomorrow morning at 7:30 a.m. If you have any snowpack or avalanche observations, drop us a line at or call us at: 406-587-6984.

Beacon Parks

The Friends of the Avalanche Center installed a Beacon Training Park outside West Yellowstone. It's located south of town on the main snowmobile trail. Stop by and do a quick practice before heading off into the mountains!


February 4: Poker Run

The Gallatin Valley Snowmobile Association is sponsoring their annual Buck Ridge Poker Ride this Saturday. All proceeds benefit the Friends of the GNFAC. Registration is at 9 a.m. in the Buck Ridge parking lot. More info at

February 8: 4th Annual Montana Ale Works Wine Dinner

Come join us for a wonderful, social evening at Montana Ale Works. Menu and ticket information is here:

10th Annual King and Queen of the Ridge

The 10th Annual King and Queen of the Ridge Hike/Ski-a-thon fundraiser is Saturday, Feb 11th. The event supports avalanche education in southwest Montana. Collect pledges for one, two or the most Ridge hikes you can do in the five hours of competition. 100% of the proceeds go to the Friends of Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center. Kids and families are encouraged to hike too! More Information / Registration Form.

1. We've recently uploaded more photos and snowpits to our web site, more than what are linked in the advisory.

2. We're creating a series of "How To…" stability test videos. So far we've got clips on performing a CT and ECT. There are located under Stability Tests on the Resources page.

3. Check out all our education programs, Click Here.

Information provided by Doug Chabot, Mark Staples, and Eric Knoff from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center. For Events and Education, or Photos and Videos, please visit the Avalanche Centers Website!

If you have any snowpack or avalanche observations, drop them a line at or call: 406-587-6984.

For detailed Avalanche Terms utilized here, please see the Avalanche Glossary.

Avalanche Danger Scale

Back to the Yellowstone Daily Winter Reports or the Yellowstone Weather Page

Information provided by Yellowstone National Park, National Weather Service and Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center

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