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Beginning of Storm - Gray Butte

Location Name: 
Gray Butte
Mt. Shasta
Date and time of observation: 
Mon, 03/08/2021 - 3:00pm
Observation made by: 

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 20' 49.812" N, 122° 11' 43.656" W
California US

Snowpack Observations


On a tour up Gray Butte early in today's storm, winds were calm to light and 2-5 inches of new light snow were encountered. No wind slabs were forming. Conditions were very "sloughy". New snow was not bonded to the underlying melt-freeze crust that had formed yesterday and sloughs were easy to trigger.

Snow from Saturday's storm is thin and has an upside down configuration - a melt-freeze crust on top of light snow on top of the old, hard pre-Saturday crust. CT tests indicate a concerning weakness in the light snow between the two crusts. See photo below. More snow and weight could activate this weakness.  

  • Observation Location: Gray Butte
  • Elevation: 7.600 ft
  • Date: 20210308
  • Time: 1500
  • Observer: Aaron Beverly
  • Sky Conditions: Obscured (X)
  • Current Precipitation: Type - SN , Rate - S2
  • Air Temperature: 19 °F
  • Surface Penetration: Ski penetration (PS) = 2-5 in ( 5-14 cm)
  • Total Snow Depth (HS): 87 in (220 cm)
  • 24-hour New Snow Depth (HN24): 5 in (14 cm)
  • Wind Direction: SW
  • Wind Speed: Light (L), 1-16 mi/hr
  • Column & Block Tests:
    • Slope Angle & Aspect: 28º, SE
    • ECTN4 ↓ 6 in (15 cm), ECTP20 ↓ 6 in (15 cm)
    • CTV SP ↓ 6 in (15 cm), CT8 SP ↓ 6 in (15 cm)


  • Upper snowpack configuration
  • Ski penetration
  • Ski penetration

Weather Observations


Cloud Cover: 
100% of the sky covered by clouds
Blowing Snow: 
Accumulation rate: 
Greater than 1 in. per hour
Air temperature: 
Below Freezing
Air temperature trend: 
Wind Speed: 
Wind Direction: