Daily Winter Weather Report
Date: Friday - 03 February 2012
|Station||Max Temp||Min Temp||Pres Temp||New Snow||Depth||Sky||Present 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
* NOTE: CLOSED FOR THE WINTER 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 ********
Dangerous avalanche conditions may already exist in many back country areas, please call the Recorded Avalanche Advisory 406-587-6981 for the most current conditions.
Caution advised for snow falling off of building roofs. Park accordingly.
* * Be prepared for bitter cold (sub-zero) temperatures (some of the temperatures below DO NOT have the Wind Chill factored in). See NWS Weather Forecast below for detailed information. * *
by the National Weather Service Riverton, Wyoming
Today...Partly cloudy. Highs 24°F to 30°F. East winds around 15 mph early in the morning.
Tonight...Partly cloudy. Lows 2°F to 8°F.
Saturday...Mostly sunny. Highs 26°F to 32°F.
Saturday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 4°F to 10°F.
Sunday...Mostly sunny. Highs 27°F to 33°F.
Sunday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 3°F to 9°F.
Monday...Partly cloudy. Highs 24°F to 30°F.
Monday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 1°F to 9°F.
Tuesday...Mostly sunny. Highs 25°F to 31°F.
Tuesday Night...Mostly clear. Lows 4°F to 12°F.
Wednesday...Mostly sunny in the morning then becoming partly cloudy. Highs 27°F to 33°F.
Wednesday Night...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Lows 8°F to 14°F.
Thursday...Mostly sunny. Highs 26°F to 32°F.
|* * * Snow Depth Totals as reported at SNOTELs * * *|
|Station||Depth (inches)||Station||Depth (inches)|
|Black Bear||82||Parker Peak||59|
|Blackwater||62||Snake River Station||53|
|Evening Star||75||Sylvan Road||37|
|Fisher Creek||85||Thumb Divide||44|
|Grassy Lake||77||Two Ocean Plateau||85|
|Lewis Lake Divide||73||West Yellowstone||32|
|Madison Plateau||53||Whiskey Creek||40|
from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center - 03 February 2012 - 7:30 am - this report is by Mark Staples. This advisory does not apply to operating ski areas.
Yesterday morning, lingering snowfall deposited an additional trace to one inch of snow. Winds remained calm since then and were blowing 5-15 mph from the eastern half of the compass this morning. On the Bridger Ridge winds increased at midnight and were blowing easterly at 20-25 mph. Temperatures were in the upper single digits to low teens Fahrenheit this morning. Today will be beautiful and sunny with temperatures near 20 degrees Fahrenheit and continued calm winds.
Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:
The southern Madison and southern Gallatin Ranges, the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone and the mountains around Cooke City:
Yesterday, Eric triggered a large, deadly avalanche on the south face of Mount Abundance. He was near the bottom of the slope on relatively flat terrain cautiously approaching this area. Eric and his partner unintentionally hit a sweet spot where they initiated a fracture (or a collapse) in weak, faceted snow at the ground. This fracture travelled 600 feet above them and across the entire slope. The resulting avalanche broke 3 to 6 feet deep. This avalanche is a major warning sign. There have been many other avalanches in this area in recent days.
Today's conditions are ones cause avalanche fatalities for three reasons:
1. The snowpack can easily produce more deadly avalanches. Unfortunately, it will give few warning signs and may allow several people to ride on a slope which will not break until someone finds the right trigger point. It is difficult to know where these trigger points exist.
2. The weather will inspire a false sense of security. It's easy to be cautious during a storm. It will be much harder today especially if you see other people riding in avalanche terrain and getting away with it. Know that they are playing Russian Roulette.
3. Eric commented that while snowmobiling, conditions "feel" stable but they are not. It will be easy to ride and climb steep slopes because the snowpack is supportable, but supportable does not mean stable.
The snowpack near the Taylor Fork and near West Yellowstone is just as weak and unstable. The only difference is that it has received less snow making slopes a bit less sensitive and avalanches not quite as big. Today dangerous avalanche conditions exist and the Avalanche Danger is CONSIDERABLE.
The Bridger Range and northern Madison Range:
The Bridger Range and the mountains near Big Sky have plenty of weak snow, but these areas have received less snow in the past week. Less snow means less stress on the snowpack and fewer avalanches. Ones that occurred last weekend did so on heavily wind loaded slopes. Yesterday's snowfall wasn't enough to tip the balance and calm winds didn't transport any snow except at the Bridger Ridge where East winds increased overnight and blew snow to the West side of the ridge. Today human triggered avalanches are possible and the Avalanche Danger is MODERATE.
The northern Gallatin Range:
The northern Gallatin Range especially the Hyalite Canyon area has received more consistent snowfall throughout this season. This snowfall has been just enough to build a snowpack lacking widespread weak layers. Today, slopes steeper than 35 degrees have a MODERATE Avalanche Danger. Slopes less than 35 degrees 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 email@example.com or call us at: 406-587-6984.
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!
EDUCATION, EVENTS, PHOTOS, SNOWPITS, and VIDEOS
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 www.gvsa.net.
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: http://bit.ly/wEg01j.
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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 406-587-6984.
For detailed Avalanche Terms utilized here, please see the Avalanche Glossary.
Information provided by Yellowstone National Park, National Weather Service and Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center
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