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Daily Winter Weather Report

Date: Monday - 04 March 2013

Yellowstone National Park Winter Weather Links
Avalanche Advisory Special Weather Info
Daily Winter Weather Report Winter Road Report
Snow Depth Totals Yellowstone Weather Forecast

Station Pres Temp Max Temp Min Temp New Snow Depth Sky Present Conditions
Bechler 0.0 12.0 0.0 0   OC NNE @ 1 - 5 mph
Canyon 9.5 9.5 -2.6 .20 40 OC  
East Entrance 14.4 15.3 11.1 .32 22 OC  
Lake -5.1 -0.0 -8.0 .30 37 OC Calm
Madison -2.3 5.7 -3.6     OC  
Mammoth 14.9 18.9 14.9 .12 9 OC NNW @ 8 - 12 mph
NE Entrance 11.8 11.8 6.4 0 26 OC  
Old Faithful -6.3 6.4 -12.5 0 25 OC ESE @ 1 mph
Soda Butte 3.9 3.9 -2.3 .11   OC  
South Entrance 4.2 16.0 3.1 .65 47 OC  
Sylvan Lake -0.6 5.7 -4.5 .20 55 OC  
Sylvan Road 7.7 13.6 5.9 .40 35 OC  
Thorofare 5.0 8.0 3.0 .12   OC NW @ 6 - 15 mph
Thumb Divide -5.8 7.7 -5.8 .10 51 OC  
Tower 13.5 17.9 9.6 .15   OC WNW @ 5 - 8 mph
West Entrance -2.7 2.3 -2.7 .10 30 OC  
BC=Broken Clouds / C=Clear / OC= Overcast/ SC=Scattered Clouds
All Temperatures are in °F ~ All Snow Depths are in Inches

* * Live Weather via All Yellowstone WebCams * *

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* * * Road Conditions * * *
Road Section Status Conditions Public Access / Info
Gardiner, MT to Mammoth Open * Snow Packed/Icy STR - Not Maintained from 4:30 PM to 6:00 AM
Mammoth to Tower Open * Snow Packed/Icy STR - Not Maintained from 4:30 PM to 6:00 AM
Tower to NE Entrance Open * Snow Packed/Icy STR - Not Maintained from 4:30 PM to 6:00 AM
Canyon to Lake Closed Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Canyon to Tower CLOSED CLOSED CLOSED ♦    (over Dunraven Pass)
Grant to South Entrance Closed Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Junction to Chief Joseph Hwy CLOSED CLOSED CLOSED
Lake to East Entrance CLOSED CLOSED CLOSED
Lake to West Thumb Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Madison to Old Faithful Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Madison to West Yellowstone Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Mammoth to Norris Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Norris to Canyon Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Norris to Madison Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles
Old Faithful to Grant Open Poor Rubber tracked oversnow concession vehicles

* = Open year-round to wheeled vehicle travel.
NR=No Restrictions / STA=Snow Tires Advised / STR=Snow Tires Required


The park service plowing schedule for roads for the spring season.

******** FOR CURRENT ROAD INFORMATION PLEASE CALL 307-344-2117 ********

¤ ¤ - Please Note - ¤ ¤
There is NO wheeled vehicle travel East of Cooke City, Montana during the winter. This road (U.S. Highway 212), is Closed to Wheeled Vehicle Travel to the East as it is NOT plowed or maintained until late spring. In order to exit Silver Gate, Montana, or Cooke City, Montana, and Yellowstone, you must travel West back through Yellowstone to the North Entrance at Gardiner, Montana to exit the park and these towns.

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    Caution advised for snow falling off of building roofs. Park accordingly.

    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. Also, see the Avalanche Advisory posted below.

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Yellowstone Seven Day Forecast on March 04, 2013
by the National Weather Service Riverton, Wyoming

Today: Mostly cloudy. Snow likely in the morning...then slight chance of snow in the afternoon. Snow accumulation around 1 inch. Total snow accumulation 1 to 3 inches. Northwest winds around 15 mph in the morning. Chance of snow 70 percent. Highs 18°F to 24°F.

Tonight: Mostly clear. Lows -3°F to 3°F.

Tuesday: Not as cold. Mostly sunny. South winds around 15 mph. Highs 28°F to 34°F. Lowest wind chill readings -10°F to -20°F in the morning.

Tuesday Night: Mostly clear in the evening then becoming partly cloudy. South winds around 15 mph. Lows 10°F to 16°F.

Wednesday: Cloudy. Chance of snow in the morning...then snow likely...possibly mixed with rain in the afternoon. Snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches. South winds around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation 60 percent. Highs 32°F to 38°F.

Wednesday Night: Mostly cloudy with a 50 percent chance of snow. Lows 15°F to 21°F.

Thursday: Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of snow. Highs 28°F to 34°F.

Thursday Night: Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of snow. Lows 13°F to 19°F.

Friday: Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of snow. Highs 28°F to 34°F.

Friday Night: Partly cloudy in the evening then becoming mostly cloudy. A 20 percent chance of snow. Lows 12°F to 18°F.

Saturday: Mostly sunny. Highs 30°F to 36°F.

Saturday Night: Mostly clear. Lows 13°F to 19°F.

Sunday: Mostly sunny in the morning then becoming partly cloudy. Highs 32°F to 38°F.

Snowflake Hazardous Weather Forecast Snowflake Yellowstone & Grand Teton Forecasts Snowflake Gibbon Falls Forecast Snowflake Mammoth Forecast Snowflake Midway Forecast Snowflake Norris Forecast Snowflake Old Faithful Forecast Snowflake

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* * * Snow Depth Totals as reported at SNOTELs * * *
Station Depth (inches) Station Depth (inches)
Black Bear 97 Parker Peak 63
Blackwater 65 South Entrance 47
Canyon 40 Sylvan Lake 55
Evening Star 72 Sylvan Road 35
Fisher Creek 82 Thumb Divide 51
Grassy Lake 77 Two Ocean Plateau 79
Lewis Lake Divide 78 West Yellowstone 30
Madison Plateau 61 Whiskey Creek 39
Northeast Entrance 26 Wolverine 27

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Avalanche Advisory

from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center - March 04, 2013 - this report is by Eric Knoff. This advisory Does Not Apply to operating ski areas.

Mountain Weather

Since yesterday morning the mountains around Bozeman, Big Sky and Cooke City picked up 5 to 7 inches of new snow. The mountains around West Yellowstone picked up 3 to 5 inches. Currently, temperatures are in the single digits above or below zero Fahrenheit and winds are blowing 10 to 20 mph out of the West-northwest. Today, light snow showers will linger in the mountains but no further accumulation is expected. Skies will gradually clear by this afternoon as a weak ridge of high pressure begins to build. Temperatures will warm into the high teens to low twenties Fahrenheit and winds will gradually shift to the west blowing 10 to 20 mph. High pressure will dominate the weather pattern on Tuesday making for a warm and sunny day.

Snowpack and Avalanche Discussion:

Bridger, Gallatin, and Madison Ranges, Lionhead Area near West Yellowstone, and Cooke City:

It's amazing how fast conditions can change. Yesterday morning I was hiking in a t-shirt and by 1:00 PM I was blinded by intense snow and wind. Similar to the weather – snowpack stability quickly deteriorated yesterday afternoon. Skiers reported triggering sensitive wind slabs from the Bridger Range to Cooke City. South and east facing slopes were the most reactive to human triggers. One slide near Cooke City resulted in a close call; fortunately nobody was caught (photo). Today, wind loaded slopes will remain the primary avalanche concern. Since winds blew strong at all elevations, fresh wind slabs likely exist above and below treeline.

A trickier avalanche problem is buried persistent weak layers. Yesterday, two snowboarders were caught in a small but potentially dangerous avalanche near History Rock in the northern Gallatin Range (photo). The situation could have been ugly, but fortunately both escaped unharmed. The slide occurred on a small but steep slope that is not connected to the main meadows that most people ski. The two riders experienced three collapses (obvious signs of instability) before triggering the slide.

This event is a great example that avalanches can occur in unassuming terrain and can easily catch skiers or riders off guard. A recent avalanche fatality in Utah is a sobering reminder that small slides can be just as deadly as large ones (accident report).

The culprit for the History Rock event and others like it is a layer of facets buried 1 to 3 feet deep. A tricky part to this scenario is stronger snow rests over weaker snow - this makes it possible for skiers or riders to venture well onto a slope before it fails. Yesterday, my partner and I toured up Dudley Creek near Big Sky and found a variety of faceted layers that caused concern (video). This situation is fairly representative of what's been happening throughout much of our advisory area. Not all slopes harbor buried weak layers; however, it's safe to assume all slopes do until proven otherwise. The best way to combat this condition is with terrain management and snowpack assessment.

Today, human triggered avalanches are likely on wind loaded slopes which have a CONSIDERABLE Avalanche Danger. Non-wind loaded slopes have a MODERATE Avalanche Danger.

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


1. For links to Articles, Education and (photos), (snowpits), or (videos) listed in the above report, please visit this Link.

2. They have recently uploaded more photos and snowpits to their web site, more than what are linked in the advisory above.

3. They have creating a series of "How To…" stability test videos. So far they have clips on performing a CT and ECT. They are located under Stability Tests on their Resources page.

Information provided by Doug Chabot, Mark Staples, and Eric Knoff from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center. For 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

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

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