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Old Ski Bowl Storm Pit

Location Name: 
Old Ski Bowl
Date and time of observation: 
Tue, 01/26/2021 - 11:00am
Observation made by: 
Red Flags:
Recent avalanche activity
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 21' 40.9536" N, 122° 12' 28.8756" W
California US

Snowpack Observations


A quick trip up into Old Ski Bowl to dig a pit and get a look at the storm before the County closed the gate.  The storm was intensifying as we dug. 

  • Observation Location: Old Ski Bowl
  • Elevation: 7,950 Feet
  • Date: 20210126
  • Time: 1100
  • Observer: Ryan Sorenson, Aaron Beverly
  • Sky Conditions: Overcast (OVC)
  • Current Precipitation: Type - SN, Rate S1
  • Air Temperature: 11 °F
  • Surface Penetration: Ski penetration (PS) = 6 in (15 cm), boot penetration (PF) = 8 in (20 cm)
  • Total Snow Depth (HS): 52 in (133cm)
  • 24-hour New Snow Depth (HN24): 2 in (5 cm)
  • Wind Direction: SW 
  • Wind Speed: Light (L), 1-16 mi/hr, twigs in motion 
  • Column & Block Tests:
    • Slope Angle & Aspect (22º, SE ) :
    • ECTX
    • CT22 SC ↓ 13 in (33 cm)

We had resistant test results under a thick rain and melt-freeze crust. This failed on a layer of small (.5 mm) four finger hard decomposing fragments and rounding facets. This could become reactive with more snow load in areas where the crust is thinner. The thick crust would suffice as an excellent bed surface. Lots of snow is coming. Anticipate elevated avalanche danger. 


  • Pit location, 8,000 feet, Old Ski Bowl, SE facing flank
  • Pit, Old Ski Bowl, SE facing flank
  • Old Ski Bowl
  • Looking SW towards Yellow Butte
  • Eastern boundary

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: