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Graupel on Mount Shasta

Location Name: 
Old Ski Bowl
Mt. Shasta
Date and time of observation: 
Tue, 02/21/2023 - 1:01pm
Observation made by: 
Red Flags:
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 21' 50.4648" N, 122° 12' 26.8236" W
California US

Snowpack Observations


Today’s outing to the Old Ski Bowl was aimed to observe the weather and snow conditions with the arrival of the storm. The storm didn’t truly commence until 1300 hours, at which point moderate to strong northwest winds picked up blowing snow onto all southerly aspects. Graupel with grains up to 5 millimeters large was the predominant precipitation type and fell at a moderate speed of 2 cm per hour. These large grains of graupel indicated unstable air masses aloft. Visibility shifted between poor and terrible, as fast-moving clouds swept over Mount Shasta, obscuring the upper mountain from sight. Temperatures were below freezing and had frozen the wet snow surfaces from the warm days prior. These slippery surfaces made gaining purchase on a snowmobile difficult. Below treeline conditions were less firm and punchy.

  • Observation Location: Old Ski Bowl
  • Elevation: 8,000 feet
  • Date: 2023.02.21
  • Time: 1300 
  • Observer: E.Falconer
  • Sky Conditions: Overcast (OVC) | Obscured (X)
  • Current Precipitation: Type - GR | Rate -  S2 
  • Air Temperature: 17 °F
  • Surface Penetration: Sled penetration (PS) = 1.5 in (3 cm), boot penetration (PF) = 9 in (23 cm)
  • Total Snow Depth (HS): 121 in (308 cm)
  • 24-hour New Snow Depth (HN24): 0
  • 24-hour New Snow Water Equivalent (HN24W): 0
  • Wind Direction: NW
  • Wind Speed: Moderate (M), 17-25 mi/hr, small trees sway | Strong (S), 26-38 mi/hr, whole trees in motion 


  • 5 millimeter large graupel grains
  • Near treeline visibility
  • Frozen surface near treeline
  • Below treeline conditions
  • Punchy surface crust below treeline
  • 9 in (23 cm) boot penetration below treeline
  • Bunny Flat

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: 
Wind Direction: