Daily Winter Weather Report
Date: Friday - 09 March 2012
|Station||Max Temp||Min Temp||Pres Temp||New Snow||Depth||Sky||Present Conditions|
|Mammoth||47||22||21||0||10||-||Hazy / S@3mph|
|Road Section||Status||Conditions||Public Access / Info|
|Gardiner to Mammoth||YR||Intermittent Snow pack & Ice||Snow Tires Required|
|Mammoth to Tower||YR||Intermittent Snow pack & Ice||Snow Tires Required|
|Tower to NE Entrance||YR||Intermittent Snow pack & Ice||Snow Tires Required|
|Beartooth Highway||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Canyon to Lake||Open||Good||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||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Lake to West Thumb||Open||Good||All oversnow vehicles|
|Madison to Old Faithful||Open||Good||All oversnow vehicles|
|Madison to West Yellowstone||Open||Good||All oversnow vehicles|
|Mammoth to Norris||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Norris to Canyon||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Norris to Madison||CLOSED *||CLOSED *||CLOSED *|
|Old Faithful to Grant||Open||Good||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 ********
* The East Entrance Road from the East Entrance to Lake Butte has closed to public oversnow travel for the season (01 March 2012).
* The Grand Loop Road from Mammoth to Norris Junction closed for the season Sunday evening (04 March 2012).
* The road from Norris Junction to Madison, and Norris Junction to Canyon closes tonight at 9:00 PM (06 March 2012).
* The Mammoth Hotel, Dining Room, and Gift Shop close today (06 March 2012).
* The Old Faithful Snowlodge, cabins, and dining room closed for the season on Sunday (11 March 2012).
* The Geyser Grill and Old Faithful Visitor Center remain open through March 15.
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: Southwest wind between 8 and 11 mph. Sunny, with a high near 40°F.
Tonight: Southwest wind between 8 and 10 mph. Clear, with a low around 14°F.
Saturday: Southwest wind between 9 and 13 mph. Sunny, with a high near 42°F.
Saturday Night: Southwest wind between 11 and 13 mph. Partly cloudy, with a low around 20°F.
Sunday: A slight chance of rain and snow after 11:00 am. South southwest wind between 13 and 17 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%. Partly sunny, with a high near 39°F.
Sunday Night: A 40% chance of snow, mainly after 11:00 pm. Southwest wind around 14 mph. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 23°F.
Monday: A 50% chance of snow showers. Southwest wind between 11 and 13 mph. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 35°F.
Monday Night: A 40% chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 23°F.
Tuesday: A 50% chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy and breezy, with a high near 35°F.
Tuesday Night: A 40% chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 20°F.
Wednesday: A chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 35°F.
Wednesday Night: A slight chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 22°F.
Thursday: A slight chance of rain and snow showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 41°F.
|* * * Snow Depth Totals as reported at SNOTELs * * *|
|Station||Depth (inches)||Station||Depth (inches)|
|Black Bear||107||Parker Peak||70|
|Blackwater||75||Snake River Station||64|
|Evening Star||88||Sylvan Road||46|
|Fisher Creek||93||Thumb Divide||52|
|Grassy Lake||100||Two Ocean Plateau||91|
|Lewis Lake Divide||90||West Yellowstone||45|
|Madison Plateau||71||Whiskey Creek||56|
from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center - 09 March 2012 - 7:30 am - this report is by Mark Staples. This advisory does not apply to operating ski areas.
The past two days have started with cold temperatures which have limited daytime warming. This morning, however, temperatures were in the high 20s Fahrenheit. Winds were blowing 10-15 mph gusting 20-30 mph from the West and Southwest. A ridge of high pressure will dominate today's weather and provide clear skies with lots of sunshine. Cloudy skies this morning shouldn't last very long, and winds should remain about the same. Temperatures will approach 40 degrees Fahrenheit in most areas although the Bridger Range could see temperatures approaching 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:
Wet Snow Avalanche Danger
With air temperatures close to freezing this morning and clear sunny skies expected today, the danger of wet snow avalanches should rise to CONSIDERABLE by this afternoon on sun exposed slopes. The warmest conditions are expected in the mountains near Bozeman, and the snowpack should give warning signs in the form of pinwheels of wet snow rolling downhill followed by small point releases near exposed rocks.
The northern Madison Range:
Yesterday I rode just south of Big Sky along Buck Ridge, in McAtee Basin and on Cedar Mountain and was amazed at the number of avalanches (photos, video). Many were natural and a few were human triggered. This avalanche activity started on March 1st with the most recent avalanche happening Wednesday morning, March 7th. Avalanches occurred on most aspects both above and below treeline. A few broke on depth hoar at the ground, but most broke on a layer of small facets about 3 feet deep. A group of avalanche researchers on Cedar Mountain yesterday experienced collapsing of the snowpack and got unstable results in their stability tests (snowpit). If snowmobiling today, it may be possible to get a false sense of confidence in the snowpack on some popular slopes. The weak layer of facets responsible for many of these avalanches was destroyed by snowmobile traffic on these popular slopes before it was buried.
I am not completely sure why so much avalanche activity just occurred near Big Sky and did not occur in other areas. However, I am sure that recent avalanches are clear signs of unstable conditions not to be ignored. For this reason today, the Avalanche Danger is CONSIDERABLE on all slopes steeper than 35 degrees and MODERATE Avalanche Danger on less steep slopes.
The Bridger, southern Madison and entire Gallatin Ranges, the mountains around Cooke City and the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone:
Fewer avalanches have been reported in the rest of the advisory area. The question is "Do these areas have more stable snow? " Or "Has there been similar avalanche activity but we don't know about it?" What we do know is that the rest of the advisory area has a similar layer of faceted crystals buried about 3 feet deep. This layer is either 3 feet deep in the middle of a deeper snowpack, or it is about 3 feet deep near the ground in a thinner snowpack (photo, video). Recent stability tests and a lack of reported avalanche activity seem to indicate that these facets have gained some strength. BUT, buried facets should not be trusted too much and avalanche activity near Big Sky is a good warning sign for other areas.
Today, the odds of triggering an avalanche have decreased making the Avalanche Danger MODERATE. Keep in mind the snowpack this season has generally been unstable and has not earned any trust. There are persistent weak layers in the snowpack on most slopes and I would be very hesitant to trust these layers with my life without making a very thorough and slope specific stability assessment.
Recent avalanche in Utah
A snowmobiler was caught and buried in an avalanche in Utah on Sunday. He was not wearing a beacon and was buried for about 20 minutes. He was incredibly lucky. Few people buried this long survive. Also, notice a recent avalanche on the adjacent slope. Recent avalanches are clear signs of unstable conditions: http://vimeo.com/38078462.
* * Accident Report * *
The accident reports for the avalanche fatality near Cooke City and the slide on Saddle Peak are now available. See this link.
* * * Last Saturday Francis Skierka from Cut Bank, Montana died in an avalanche in northwestern Montana near Marias Pass. Sadly his wife, Andrea, is pregnant and due in two months. A memorial fund to help Andrea and her baby has been established: The Francis Skierka Family Memorial, Stockman Bank, 125 West Main, Cut Bank MT 59427, 406-873-9400. * * *
The next advisory tomorrow morning at 7:30 a.m. If you have any snowpack or avalanche observations, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at: 406-587-6984.
For Audio, Photos, Videos, and More Detailed Information related to this report, Please Visit the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center.
~ EVENT ~
Come to Bridger Bowl on Saturday, March 17th (Saint Patrick's Day) with telemark skis, AT skis, alpine skis, snowboards, split boards, or even snow blades. The theme is Snowpocalypse based on the wildly popular Mayan 2012 apocalypse. $30 gets you into the races, a pint glass, t-shirt, a good time, a raffle ticket, and food by Cafe Fresco. Pre-register at Mystery Ranch or Grizzly Ridge: March 11-16. Visit http://pinheadclassic.com/ or the Pinhead Facebook Page for more info.
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
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 email@example.com 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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