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Daily Winter Weather Report

Date: Tuesday - 07 February 2012

Station Max Temp Min Temp Pres Temp New Snow Depth Sky Present Conditions
Canyon 30 -21 -15 0 32 C Calm
East Entrance 31 -13 10 0 31 BC Calm
Grant Village 17 -13 17 0 38 C Calm
Lake 29 -9 -1 0 33 SC Calm
Lamar 28 -17 -4 0 12 C Calm
Madison 30 -16 -14 0 20 C Calm
Mammoth 21 11 12 0 5 SC S@7-9mph
Old Faithful 35 -14 -12 0 29 C Calm
Pahaska 16 15 15 0 - SC Calm
Snake River 27 -15 -13 0 56 SC Calm
Soda Butte 4 -3 4 0 - SC Calm
Thumb Divide -3 -13 -13 0 - SC Calm
Tower 11 -5 9 0 16 C NE@1mph
West Entrance 34 -8 -7 0 32 - Calm / Foggy
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 07 February 2012
by the National Weather Service Riverton, Wyoming

Today...Partly cloudy. Highs 22°F to 28°F. Lowest wind chill readings -14°F to -24°F in the morning.

Tonight...Partly cloudy in the evening then clearing. Patchy fog after midnight. Lows -5°F to 5°F.

Wednesday...Partly cloudy. Patchy fog in the morning. Highs 25°F to 31°F. Lowest wind chill readings -10°F to -20°F in the morning.

Wednesday Night...Mostly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Lows 1°F to 9°F.

Thursday...Mostly cloudy in the morning then becoming partly cloudy. Highs 25°F to 31°F.

Thursday Night...Partly cloudy. Lows 5°F to 11°F.

Friday...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Highs 28°F to 34°F.

Friday Night...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Lows 11°F to 17°F.

Saturday...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Highs 27°F to 33°F.

Saturday Night...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Lows 11°F to 17°F.

Sunday...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow. Highs 25°F to 31°F.

Sunday Night...Partly cloudy in the evening then becoming mostly cloudy. A 40 percent chance of snow. Lows 10°F to 16°F.

Monday...Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of snow. Highs 22°F to 28°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 78 Parker Peak 56
Blackwater 58 Snake River Station 50
Canyon 37 Sylvan Lake 45
Evening Star 70 Sylvan Road 36
Fisher Creek 78 Thumb Divide 42
Grassy Lake 74 Two Ocean Plateau 78
Lewis Lake Divide 69 West Yellowstone 30
Madison Plateau 50 Whiskey Creek 39
Northeast Entrance 28 Wolverine 25

Avalanche Information
from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center - 07 February 2012 - 7:30 am - this report is by Doug Chabot. This advisory does not apply to operating ski areas.

Mountain Weather

Yesterday, a few flurries, clouds and colder temperatures were a reminder that winter has not completely forsaken us. This morning, mountain temperatures are in the high single digits Fahrenheit as light winds blow out of the southeast. Today, skies will become mostly sunny, temperatures will rise into the high teens Fahrenheit and southeast winds will blow 10-20 mph.

Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:

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

There are always zones of thin snow cover, but this season they have greater significance since we are able to trigger avalanches from these shallow spots. Deep in the snowpack near the ground are weak, faceted crystals draped like a blanket over most slopes. These facets link thin slopes to thicker ones. More importantly, they allow us to trigger avalanches from thin spots where our body weight adds enough stress to initiate cracks, collapse the weak layer and propagate fractures across the slope. Eric unintentionally triggered a large avalanche on Friday outside Cooke City on Mount Abundance when this happened. On Sunday, I investigated a large natural avalanche on Lionhead, likely triggered from a thin spot also.

It is not always obvious where these thin zones are, but as the snowpack adjusts to its load signs of instability are not obvious and we can be fooled into thinking slopes are more stable than they really are. It's tricky and dangerous times. Multiple people have been highmarking or skiing steep slopes without triggering a slide, but it would be wrong to confuse luck with a skilled assessment.

The fact that Eric got surprised with the instability is enough for me to be a little extra conservative. Recent avalanche activity and a persistent, widespread weak layer add seriousness to our decisions. Furthermore, some slopes in the southern Madison Range are plagued by a layer of feathery surface hoar crystals buried a foot deep creating instability too. For today, the Avalanche Danger is rated CONSIDERABLE on slopes steeper than 35 degrees and MODERATE Avalanche Danger on less steep. A Moderate rating is not a green light; it means triggering avalanches is still possible.

The Bridger, northern Madison and northern Gallatin Ranges:

No new snow and no recent wind-loading is allowing the snowpack to stabilize in our northern mountains. Every day without a load is another day of deflating avalanche danger. However, because buried facets underlie many slopes, it can only deflate so much and slopes with layers of weak snow topped with a denser slab could still avalanche. Yesterday, skiers on Mount Ellis found this weak snow surviving, as did Karl near Cedar Mountain. Slopes steeper than 35 degrees or any slope with a hard wind slab has a MODERATE Avalanche Danger since they are susceptible to avalanching from a human-trigger. Less steep slopes without a wind slab 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 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.

You can help raise money two 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!

    2). Sponsor someone. If you don't have someone to sponsor, consider sponsoring the GNFAC since we'll be hiking for dollars. Email us at with a pledge!

Go to for more information and registration forms.

PRIZES INCLUDE: 4frnt skis, two pair of Schnee's Hunter boots, three Mystery Ranch backpacks and three pair of Oboz shoes.

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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