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Castle Lake Snowpack

Location Name: 
Castle Lake
Castle Lake
Date and time of observation: 
Sun, 01/20/2019 - 3:45pm
Observation made by: 

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 13' 21.9252" N, 122° 23' 16.9404" W
California US

Snowpack Observations


  • Lake level area hosts semi-soft and saturated snow. Castle Lake itself is still frozen over, but with 6-8 inches of slush on top of hard ice. Despite mushy conditions on the lake, it is still supportable with skis on. Walking on the lake would result in wet feet.
  • Rain runnels dominate the Castle Lake area.
  • Two feet of consolidated snow rests on top of old snow surfaces. 
  • Breakable crust of all forms dominates and is widespread. Icy and sometimes breakable crust will be found on wind exposed ridgelines.
  • Many cornice failures have occurred along the Middle Peak ridgeline
  • Some loose-wet debris was observed below the steep, northerly facing slopes behind the lake.
  • Old glide cracks were observed on Middle Peak.
  • Settlement cones noted around pine trees


Weather Observations


  • A generally cloudy day, however a brief break in the action allowed a view across the valley of Mount Shasta as well as Castle Crags from the top of Middle Peak
  • Clouds and fog quickly enveloped the area and a foggy descent ensued.
  • Winds were steady and moderate for a short period this afternoon out of the southwest. 
  • Wind duration is unknown, however minor wind loading had occurred on easterly aspects. Some cracking was observed while skinning along a ridgeline. Fresh wind slabs were very small and inconsequential. 
  • Light snow fell at times, no accumulation
  • Snow level was ~500 vertical feet below lake level.


Cloud Cover: 
75% of the sky covered by clouds
Blowing Snow: 
Accumulation rate: 
Less than 1 in. per hour
Air temperature: 
Below Freezing
Air temperature trend: 
Wind Speed: 
Wind Direction: