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During the Diminishing Storm

Location Name: 
Green Butte Ridge, Gray Butte, Eddies
Mt. Shasta
Date and time of observation: 
Tue, 01/04/2022 - 1:00pm
Observation made by: 
Red Flags:
Whumphing noises, shooting cracks, or collapsing
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 21' 40.0824" N, 122° 13' 47.6544" W
California US

Snowpack Observations


New snow from the storm that started early Monday morning measured around 12 inches at Bunny Flat late morning. Light snow was falling (S-1), visibility was approaching whiteout levels, and winds were calm even near treeline. Not much evidence of wind loading was seen just above treeline. Temperatures were warming and the new snow had a slight upside down configuration. Water vapor was condensing on goggles by mid-afternoon.

Various observations from around the area indicated the continued existence of a weakness in the snowpack around the crumbly rime crust from 12/28. Ski cuts produced blocking snow and column and block tests yielded consistent medium failures (CT11 SC ↓ 35 cm, ECTN11 ↓ 35 cm). Spine tingling whumphing was felt and heard near the top of Gray Butte. This collapsing may have been deeper within the snowpack than the rime crust.

Southerly winds were forming small overhanging cornices in the Eddies that broke easily under the weight of a skier.

Overall, though, the snowpack was settling and strengthening. 


  • Rime crust from 12/12 under about 12 inches of new snow.
  • CT11, Sudden Collapse (SC) down 14 inches (35 cm)
  • Blocking snow
  • Cornice formation in the Eddies
  • Reactive to ski trigger

Weather Observations


Cloud Cover: 
100% 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: