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Green Butte Ridge (Powder Bowl)

Location Name: 
Green Butte Ridge
Region: 
Mt. Shasta
Date and time of observation: 
Sat, 03/07/2020 - 12:30pm
Observation made by: 
Forecaster
Red Flags: 
Recent avalanche activityWhumphing noises, shooting cracks, or collapsingRecent loading by new snow, wind, or rainObvious avalanche path

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 22' 18.4332" N, 122° 12' 43.4304" W
California US

Snowpack Observations

Details

Observations on Green Butte, Powder Bowl:

  • TIME: 20200307 - 1100 to 1300
  • ASPECT: Northeast
  • ELEVATION: 9,000 Feet
  • SKY: Obscured
  • PRECIPITATION: Very light snowfall S-1 (<1 cm/hr) 
  • BLOWING SNOW: Yes moderate blowing snow loading easterly aspects
  • TEMPERATURE: 25°F
  • BOOT / SKI PENETRATION: Boot 3-5 inches (7-12 cm), Ski 2-3 inches (5-7 cm) 
  • HEIGHT OF SNOW (HS): BTL-40 inches (100 cm) NTL- 55 inches (140 cm) ATL- 45 inches (115 cm)
  • HEIGHT OF STORM SNOW (HST): 5 inches (12 cm)
  • WIND: Fresh breeze 19-24 mi/hr NNW

On a tour from Bunny Flat to the top of Green Butte, the new snow was three to five inches deep. Below and near treeline, the snow was light and unconsolidated and barely covers old pockmarks, rocks, and bushes. The old snowpack below is firm and icy. Above treeline, productive westerly winds were actively loading east and N-NE-E facing terrain.  Minor blocking and cracking were observed along the ridgeline on easterly facing test slopes.  I triggered a small wind slab avalanche below a cornice near the top of Powder Bowl. This slide (SS, AC/c, R1D1) failed on a density change 6 inches down and propagated to approximately 10 feet wide and ran 20 feet downslope.  This avalanche was relatively small and inconsequential, but it was big enough to sweep an unaware skier off their feet.

Photos

  • Small wind slab avalanche Powder Bowl
  • Blocking and cracking
  • Three to five inches of new snow
  • Bunny Flat
  • Exposed bushes and rocks below treeline
  • Green Butte Ridge near 8,600 feet
  • Looking toward Gray Butte from summit of Green Butte
  • Looking down Powder Bowl
  • Green Butte

Weather Observations

Statistics

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