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Avalanche Forecast for 2020-03-01 06:30

  • EXPIRED ON March 2, 2020 @ 6:30 am
    Published on March 1, 2020 @ 6:30 am
  • Issued by Ryan Sorenson - Mount Shasta Avalanche Center

The avalanche danger remains LOW for all elevations and aspects throughout the forecast area. Be prepared for a firm snowpack. Bring an ice axe, crampons and helmet if ascending into alpine terrain. Pay extra close attention where firm, icy slopes terminate into exposed rock. Mostly sunny, cold and breezy conditions will continue. 

Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.

Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.

Generally safe avalanche conditions. Watch for unstable snow on isolated terrain features.

Avalanche Problem 1: Normal Caution

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  • Likelihood ?
    Certain
    Very Likely
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Avalanche danger is low but always carry the proper equipment such as a beacon, shovel, and probe. An ice axe, crampons, and helmet are necessary if planning on traveling above treeline on Mount Shasta. Snow surfaces are firm and variable. 

With large, exposed patches of rock on the mountain, expect rockfall, despite warm or cold temperatures. Wear a helmet and keep your head up.

Forecast Discussion

If climbing the mountain, expect firm conditions. Solid ice axe, crampon, and self-arrest skills mandatory. You need a Mt Shasta summit pass if traveling above 10,000 feet, even if you don't plan on going to the summit. A wilderness permit and human waste packout bag are also required. All of these items are available for self-issue at the Bunny Flat trailhead or Mount Shasta Ranger Station. Annual passes ($30) are only available at the ranger station during business hours (Mon-Fri, 8 AM-4:30 PM). Dress for cold, windy weather.

Recent Observations

Yesterday was gray, cold, and windy on Mount Shasta. Temperatures averaged 21 degrees F at 8,000 feet. Wind was light and southerly.

The snowpack continues to be shallow, firm, and dirty, while cold temperatures have the melt-freeze conditions locked up.  Pockmarks, wind-sculpted sastrugi, and old tracks texture the snow surface. The snow remaining at higher elevations is sugary, rotten, and eroded from the wind. 

[Photo: Scott Becker - 2.29.20-Avalanche Gulch near 11,200 feet. "The snow is pretty firm but not icy. Kind of sugary/rotten where gravel has blown down from the exposed rocks"]

Weather and Current Conditions

Weather Summary

The cold and gray storm experienced yesterday is currently moving south and east. We will wake up to partly cloudy skies beginning to clear. Expect mostly sunny, breezy, and chilly conditions with afternoon temperatures in the mid to upper 20s.  

High pressure will return this week, bringing warm days and cold nights. It will be windy for a few days. Then calmer air will set the stage for some much-needed precip this weekend. 

24 Hour Weather Station Data @ 5:00 AM

Weather Station Temp (°F) Wind (mi/hr) Snow (in) Comments
Cur Min Max Avg Avg Max Gust Dir Depth New Water Equivalent Settlement
Mt. Shasta City (3540 ft) 29 29 44 36 6
Sand Flat (6750 ft) 18 16 30 24 41 0 0 0
Ski Bowl (7600 ft) 15.5 15 32.5 22.5 60.3 0 0 0
Gray Butte (8000 ft) 15 14.5 30 20.5 5 31 SE
Castle Lake (5870 ft) 19.5 19.5 34 24.5 27.8 0 0
Mount Eddy (6509 ft) 16.5 16.5 28 21.5 2 11 SSE 44.4 0 0
Ash Creek Bowl (7250 ft) down
Ash Creek Ridge (7895 ft) down

Two Day Mountain Weather Forecast

Produced in partnership with the Medford NWS

For 7000 ft to 9000 ft
  Sunday
(4 a.m. to 10 p.m.)
Sunday Night
(10 p.m. to 4 a.m.)
Monday
(4 a.m. to 10 p.m.)
Weather Mostly sunny. Breezy. Clear. Breezy. Sunny
Temperature (°F) 29 22 40
Wind (mi/hr) North 10-15 North 15-20 North 10-15
Precipitation SWE / Snowfall (in) 0.00 / 0 0.00 / 0 0.00 / 0
For 9000 ft to 11000 ft
  Sunday Sunday Night Monday
Weather Mostly sunny. Breezy. Wind chill values as low as -20 F. Clear. Breezy. Wind chill values as low as -19 F. Mostly sunny
Temperature (°F) 10 10 31
Wind (mi/hr) Northeast 25-30 Northeast 40-45 North 40-45
Precipitation SWE / Snowfall (in) 0.00 / 0 0.00 / 0 0.00 / 0

Season Precipitation for Mount Shasta City

Period Measured (in) Normal (in) Percent of Normal (%)
From Oct 1, 2023 (the wet season) 12.90 29.50 44
Month to Date (since Jun 1, 2024) 0.12 7.23 2
Year to Date (since Jan 1, 2024) 3.97 14.29 28

Disclaimer

This forecast does not apply to Ski Areas or Highways and is for the Mt. Shasta, Castle Lake and Mt. Eddy backcountry. Use this information for guidance only. You may find different conditions in the backcountry and should travel accordingly. This forecast expires 24 hours after the posted time unless otherwise noted.