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Daily Winter Weather Report

Date: Monday - 30 January 2012

Station Max Temp Min Temp Pres Temp New Snow Depth Sky Present Conditions
Canyon 26 -5 13 1.5 34 OC Calm / Snowing
East Entrance 36 6 27 0 30 OC Calm
Grant Village 27 12 20 T 48 OC Calm
Lake 27 11 19 T 35 OC Calm / Light snow
Lamar 27 15 22 0 11 OC Calm
Madison 32 18 30 .10 20 OC Calm
Mammoth 37 26 31 0 6 OC SSW@7-10mph
Old Faithful 30 10 23 T 32 OC Calm / Snowing
Pahaska 31 20 27 T - OC Calm
Snake River 38 -1 11 1 61 OC Calm / Light snow
Soda Butte 27 15 22 0 - OC Calm
Thumb Divide 28 18 23 .10 - OC Calm
Tower 32 9 20 0 18 OC S@3-5mph / Snowing
West Entrance 28 6 20 0 33 OC Calm / Light snow
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 30 January 2012
by the National Weather Service Riverton, Wyoming

Today...Breezy. Snow likely in the morning...then snow in the afternoon. Snow accumulation of 2 to 3 inches. Highs 24°F to 30°F. Southwest winds 15 to 20 mph. Chance of snow 90 percent.

Tonight...Breezy...cloudy. Snow in the evening...then chance of snow after midnight. Snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches. Total snow accumulation 3 to 5 inches. Lows 10°F to 16°F. Southwest winds 15 to 20 mph. Chance of snow 90 percent.

Tuesday...Cloudy. Chance of snow in the morning...then slight chance of snow in the afternoon. Highs 23°F to 29°F. Southwest winds around 15 mph. Chance of snow 30 percent.

Tuesday Night...Mostly cloudy with a 50 percent chance of snow. Lows 13°F to 19°F. Southwest winds around 15 mph.

Wednesday...Cloudy with a 50 percent chance of snow. Highs 24°F to 30°F. Southwest winds around 15 mph.

Wednesday Night...Colder. Mostly cloudy in the evening then becoming partly cloudy. A 30 percent chance of snow. Lows 2°F to 8°F.

Thursday...Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of snow showers. Highs 21°F to 27°F.

Thursday Night...Mostly clear. Patchy fog after midnight. Lows -2°F to 8°F.

Friday...Sunny. Patchy fog in the morning. Highs 23°F to 29°F.

Friday Night...Mostly clear. Areas of fog after midnight. Lows 2°F to 12°F.

Saturday...Sunny. Areas of fog in the morning. Highs 30°F to 36°F.

Saturday Night...Mostly clear. Areas of fog after midnight. Lows 4°F to 14°F.

Sunday...Mostly sunny. Areas of fog in the morning. Highs 31°F to 37°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 85 Parker Peak 57
Blackwater 58 Snake River Station 53
Canyon 38 Sylvan Lake 45
Evening Star 71 Sylvan Road 36
Fisher Creek 83 Thumb Divide 44
Grassy Lake 78 Two Ocean Plateau 81
Lewis Lake Divide 71 West Yellowstone 32
Madison Plateau 54 Whiskey Creek 41
Northeast Entrance 30 Wolverine 28

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

Mountain Weather

Over the past 24 hours no new snow has fallen over our advisory area. Today, a weak weather disturbance embedded in a strong westerly flow will move into southwest Montana. Snow showers will develop over the mountains by mid morning, producing accumulations of 2 to 4 inches by tonight.

Currently, mountain temperatures are in the high teens to mid twenties Fahrenheit and winds are blowing out of the West-southwest at 25-45 mph. Temperatures will not warm much today and winds will remain strong out of the west, blowing 25-40 mph. Snow will diminish by late this evening and temperatures will drop 10 to 15 degrees Fahrenheit.

Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:

The mountains around Cooke City:

The mountains around Cooke City have a layer of facets buried 2 to 3 feet deep that can be found on many slopes. This layer is now additionally stressed by the weight of 4 to 5 inches of new snow that fell over the past few days. On slopes with a southerly aspect this layer can be found resting over an ice crust, creating a potentially dangerous facet-crust combination under the existing slab. Additionally, west-northwest winds have blown snow onto leeward slopes, creating additional stress on this layer. Yesterday, riders in the area observed multiple natural avalanches, most of which occurred on south and east facing slopes.

Today, snow and strong winds will continue to tip the scales, making the Avalanche Danger HIGH on all wind loaded slopes. Non-wind loaded slopes have a CONSIDERABLE Avalanche Danger.

The southern Madison and southern Gallatin Ranges, and the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone:

The mountains around West Yellowstone have the weakest snowpack in our forecast area. A cohesive slab 2 to 3 feet thick resting over weak facets near the ground is producing a structure ripe for causing avalanches. Slopes steeper than 35 degrees and any slope that has received a wind load will be the most susceptible to human triggered avalanches. Yesterday, skiers near Hebgen Lake got unstable results in their stability tests and experienced cracking and collapsing, obvious signs of instability. Today, if you are riding in avalanche terrain, cautious route finding and conservative decision making are essential.

A poor snowpack structure continues to make human triggered avalanches likely and the Avalanche Danger is rated CONSIDERABLE.

The Bridger Range and northern Madison Range:

A variety of conditions can be found in the Bridger and northern Madison Ranges. On slopes that have not been affected by the wind, the snowpack is comprised mainly of weak, sugary facets. These slopes have plenty of weak snow, but are relatively stable due to the lack of slab. However, strong winds over the past week have affected many slopes making for variable conditions. Yesterday, skiers on Yellow Mountain near Big Sky found a poor snowpack structure, keeping their decision making conservative.

Today, the primary avalanche concern will be any slope that has been affected by the wind. These slopes likely have a slab resting over weaker snow, generating a structure capable of producing an avalanche.

For this reason human triggered avalanches are possible and the Avalanche Danger is rated MODERATE.

The northern Gallatin Range:

The lack of significant snowfall combined with a stronger snowpack has made for generally stable conditions in the northern Gallatin Range. Triggering a slide will be difficult, but it's not entirely out of the question. Steep, upper elevation slopes, specifically those that have received a wind load will be the most prone to unstable snow. Likely trigger points will be on slopes directly below ridgelines or in steep-rocky terrain where the snowpack is thinner.

For today, human triggered avalanches are possible on wind loaded slopes and slopes steeper than 35 degrees where the Avalanche Danger is rated MODERATE. Less steep, non wind loaded slopes have a LOW Avalanche Danger.

The Avalanche Danger could increase in all areas if snow and wind continue through the day.

Special Note: Backcountry Casanova Seth Meyer is now successfully engaged to his sweetheart Kristen Drake (photo). Congratulations!.

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!


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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