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Watching The Storm Build - Gray Butte

Location Name: 
Gray Butte
Mt. Shasta
Date and time of observation: 
Mon, 01/02/2023 - 1:01pm
Observation made by: 
Red Flags:
Recent loading by new snow, wind, or rain

Location Map

96067 Mount Shasta , CA
United States
41° 20' 52.0368" N, 122° 11' 41.46" W
California US

Snowpack Observations


The goal today was to observe Gray Butte's different aspects with the onset of the incoming storm. It started snowing at 12:30 pm with light winds and moderate gusts drifting snow onto NE-E-SE slopes. Windward, westerly aspects near ridges and exposed areas held firm and compact conditions. One inch of new snow fell onto a hard crust on west-southwest aspects and a less thick, double crust, on east-southeast aspects (See photo.) These crusts and hard surfaces may act as great bed surfaces for future snow to slide on. Unstable test results failing within the Dec 26th–30th storm cycle are as follows. CT8-Q2-30cm   ECTP19-Q2-30cm 

  • Observation Location: Gray Butte
  • Elevation: 8,310
  • Date: 2023.01.02
  • Time: 1330
  • Observer: Eric Falconer 
  • Sky Conditions: Overcast 
  • Current Precipitation: Type - S-1 
  • Air Temperature: N/A
  • Surface Penetration: Ski penetration (PS) = 3 in (5cm), boot penetration 35in (88 cm)
  • Total Snow Depth (HS): 68 in (170 cm)
  • 24-hour New Snow Depth (HN24): None
  • 24-hour New Snow Water Equivalent (HN24W)
  • Wind Direction: West-Southwest
  • Wind Speed: Light 1-16 mi/hr, twigs in motion / Moderate (M), 17-25 mi/hr, small trees sway 
  • Column & Block Tests:
    • Slope Angle & Aspect: SE 31°
    • ECTP19-Q2-↓13in(30cm)
    • CT8-Q2-↓13in(30cm)


  • Exposed near treeline conditions
  • Northeast cornice
  • Movable Dry Loose snow on east aspect
  • Dust on double crust combo. East aspect
  • Compression test
  • Extended column test
  • 1in of fresh!

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: