Forecaster Observation - Skookoleel, southern Whitefish Range

Location Name: 
Forecaster Observation - Skookoleel, southern Whitefish Range
Date and time of observation: 
Fri, 12/09/2016 - 13:00
Location Map: 

Red Flags: 
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain

Observation made by: Forecaster
Snowpit Observations
More detailed information about the snowpack: 

The focus of todays tour was to determine: the current snow surface prior to forecasted incoming storms; stratigraphy and stability of  the snowpack on north and south upper elevation aspects; recent cornice development and atypical wind deposition in the southern Whitefish Range.

  • Low density snow (5-8 %) constitutes the majority of the snow surface at all elevations. This layer has the potential to act as a weak layer if the forecasted storms deposit and drift relatively warmer and denser snow over the next few days.  
  • At an elevation of 6750 feet the windward southerly facing snowpack was 95 cm in depth. Failure occured 51 cm from the snow surface at an interface between a denser layer (1F) that capped a 4 cm weaker layer (4F-) composed of small facets. Stability results: ECT 17 and ECT 22. 
  • At an elevation of 6750 feet a wind loaded northerly aspect had a depth of 156 cm. Failure occured immediately below a freezing rain crust 49 cm from the surface in a weak layer (F+) of small decomposing facets. Stability results: ECTN 18, ECTN 19, CTM 17, CTM 18.
  • Cornice development was relatively small,  which we partially attributed to the recent atypical winds.
  • Atypical wnd deposition was minor in our location. 
Snowpit or crown profile photo or graph: 
Weather Observations
Cloud Cover: 
100% of the sky covered by clouds
Air temperature: 
Below Freezing
Wind Speed: 
Light (Twigs in motion)
Air temperature trend: 
Wind Direction: