Trip Planning for Southern Madison

as of 5:00 am
Dec 60″ |
Dec 5 8″ | NA
Dec 4 0″ | NA
9460′     12/06 at 15:00
Weather station is Offline
9000′     12/07 at 01:00
13℉
38″ Depth
Bottom Line: The southern mountains, including the area around Cooke City and West Yellowstone have gotten 2-3 feet of snow in the last week. Although the snowfall has tapered off, the wind has not. Wind redistributes snow and creates new loading. As far as the snowpack is concerned, it is still snowing out. The snowpack needs time to adjust to this new load and it is not advisable to get into avalanche terrain. Avalanches can break 2-4 feet deep. They can be large and deadly.
Primary Problem: Persistent Weak Layer

Past 5 Days

Fri Dec 2

Considerable
Sat Dec 3

Moderate
Sun Dec 4

Moderate
Mon Dec 5

Considerable
Tue Dec 6

Considerable

Relevant Avalanche Activity

Southern Madison
Ernie Miller Ridge
Collapsing on Ernie Miller Ridge
Ernie Miller Ridge
AS
Elevation: 9,300
Aspect: E
Coordinates: 44.9453, -111.1350
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

"We toured to Ernie Miller today and saw a natural avalanche on a NE slope around 9600 ft. We heard and felt multiple collapses on our way in. We dug a pit on an east facing slope around 9300 ft where we found 105 cm of snow. We got a ECTN 2 result, failing on an interface about 15cm from the surface and ECTP5 failing 40 cm from the surface."

"Toured up to Bacon Rind today and skied meadows off of the ridge. Noted many collapses and whumpfs in the snowpack as we ascended east aspects to the ridge."


More Avalanche Details
Southern Madison
Bacon Rind
Two Natural Avalanches Ernie Miller
Incident details include images
Bacon Rind
SS-N-R2-D2-O
Elevation: 9,600
Coordinates: 44.9575, -111.0970
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

Toured up to Bacon Rind today and skied meadows off of the ridge. Noted many collapses and whumpfs in the snowpack as we ascended east aspects to the ridge. Looking toward Ernie Miller ridge, we noted an old crown in the main bowl just below the summit. It was on an E-NE aspect, 200 or more feet wide and looked to be filled in with new snow but was still visible. Looking east from the top of the ridge, we noted another crown on a west aspect that looked to be about 100' wide and deep.


More Avalanche Details

Relevant Photos

Displaying 1 - 15
  • From obs 12/3/22: "Looking east from the top of [Ernie Miller] ridge, we noted another crown on a west aspect that looked to be about 100' wide and deep." Photo: H. Darby

  • From obs 12/3/22: "Looking toward Ernie Miller ridge, we noted an old crown in the main bowl just below the summit. It was on an E-NE aspect, 200 or more feet wide and looked to be filled in with new snow but was still visible." Photo: H.Darby

  • From obs 12/3/22: "Toured up to Bacon Rind today and skied meadows off of the ridge. Dug a pit at 8700' on a W aspect. HS was 70cm. We got an ECTP12 45 cm up from the ground at the interface between wind packed snow and a layer of .5-1mm facets and mixed forms. That layer made up the bottom 45cm of the snowpack in that area. Dug another pit at 8800' on an E aspect. HS was 115cm. We got an ECTP 14 50cm up from the ground on that same interface as described above. The bottom 50cm of the snowpack looked to be facets and mixed forms. The upper 65cm in that area was a mixture of different layers of wind packed grains that ranged from F to 4F hardness." Photo: H. Darby

  • From obs 12/3/22: "Toured up to Bacon Rind today and skied meadows off of the ridge. Dug a pit at 8700' on a W aspect. HS was 70cm. We got an ECTP12 45 cm up from the ground at the interface between wind packed snow and a layer of .5-1mm facets and mixed forms. That layer made up the bottom 45cm of the snowpack in that area. Dug another pit at 8800' on an E aspect. HS was 115cm. We got an ECTP 14 50cm up from the ground on that same interface as described above. The bottom 50cm of the snowpack looked to be facets and mixed forms. The upper 65cm in that area was a mixture of different layers of wind packed grains that ranged from F to 4F hardness." Photo: H. Darby

  • We just installed a new Beacon Checker at the Fir Ridge Trailhead which leads into Teepee Basin and Cabin Creek. Thanks Jim Norlander for installing it! Photo: J. Norlander

  • At 1:30pm on 11/23 I intentionally triggered a fresh drift of snow in a narrow avalanche path along the edge of the north bowl at Bridger. Northeast aspect at 7,600’ elevation. The crown was 6-8” deep consisting of snow that fell today, 20’ wide and ran 250’ vertical. SS-ASc-R2-D1.5-I. Photo: GNFAC

  • At 1:30pm on 11/23 I intentionally triggered a fresh drift of snow in a narrow avalanche path along the edge of the north bowl at Bridger. Northeast aspect at 7,600’ elevation. The crown was 6-8” deep consisting of snow that fell today, 20’ wide and ran 250’ vertical. SS-ASc-R2-D1.5-I. Photo: GNFAC

  • Big Sky ski patrol triggered these slides with explosives on 11/22 during routine avalanche mitigation work. The avalanches were hard slabs that averaged 12" deep and broke on a weak layer above a crust on top of snow that fell in October. Photo: BSSP

  • Big Sky ski patrol triggered these slides with explosives on 11/22 during routine avalanche mitigation work. The avalanches were hard slabs that averaged 12" deep and broke on a weak layer above a crust on top of snow that fell in October. Photo: BSSP

  • An observer reported "A number of Avalanche Crowns on an east aspect at 9500 ft." in Tepee Basin.

  • Observer reported "A number of Avalanche Crowns on an east aspect at 9500 ft." in Tepee Basin.

  • An observer reported "A number of Avalanche Crowns on an east aspect at 9500 ft." in Tepee Basin

  • From obs: "Skied Hyalite Peak today and found a wind slab ~10cm deep. Ski cut a small cornice below the main face and broke a small slide that carried ~20’ with little energy with a ~25’ wide crown" Photo: C. Crowe

  • From obs 11/12/22: "Looks like this could be a problem when buried."

  • Evidence of wind-loading creating the conditions for avalanches in the Bridger Range. Cracking is an indicator of instability. The observer noted this was "Nothing consequential," but this shows that unstable drifts are forming. They will be more consequential where there is more snow and as the wind creates larger drifts. Photo: E Smith

WebCams


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Snowpit Profiles- Southern Madison

 

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Weather Forecast Southern Madison

Extended Forecast for

20 Miles S Big Sky MT

  • Overnight

    Overnight: Patchy blowing snow. Partly cloudy, with a low around 9. Wind chill values as low as -10. South southwest wind around 21 mph.

    Patchy
    Blowing Snow

    Low: 9 °F

  • Wednesday

    Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 17. Wind chill values as low as -5. South southwest wind 16 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph.

    Mostly Sunny

    High: 17 °F

  • Wednesday
    Night

    Wednesday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 5. Wind chill values as low as -10. South wind around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 18 mph.

    Partly Cloudy

    Low: 5 °F

  • Thursday

    Thursday: Partly sunny, with a high near 14. Wind chill values as low as -10. South wind 15 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph.

    Partly Sunny

    High: 14 °F

  • Thursday
    Night

    Thursday Night: A 20 percent chance of snow after 11pm.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 8. South wind 17 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 29 mph.

    Slight Chance
    Snow

    Low: 8 °F

  • Friday

    Friday: Snow likely.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 17. South southwest wind 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

    Snow Likely

    High: 17 °F

  • Friday
    Night

    Friday Night: A 20 percent chance of snow before 11pm.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 8. South wind 15 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph.

    Slight Chance
    Snow then
    Mostly Cloudy

    Low: 8 °F

  • Saturday

    Saturday: A chance of snow, mainly after 11am.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 19. Breezy, with a south wind 18 to 22 mph, with gusts as high as 29 mph.

    Chance Snow
    and Breezy

    High: 19 °F

  • Saturday
    Night

    Saturday Night: A chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 16. Breezy.

    Chance Snow
    and Breezy

    Low: 16 °F

The Last Word

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