Regional Conditions for Southern Madison

as of 5:00 am
Oct 180″ |
Oct 17 0″ | 25-45 SW
Oct 16 0″ | 15-30 W
9460′     04/02 at 13:00
40.6℉
E - 2mph
Gusts 14mph
9000′   10/19 at 1:00
17℉
Depth
Bottom Line: The expected snow and wind through the weekend will increase the chances of triggering an avalanche. Slopes that were dirt prior to the storm will not become dangerous with the new snow, but slopes above 8000’ harboring older snow will have the potential to slide. Slopes with dense, wind-loaded snow are inviting to ski and easy to ascend on skins or foot, however, freshly formed drifts will also be the most susceptible to avalanche.
Primary Problem: Wind-Drifted Snow

Past 5 Days

Thu May 2

None
Thu Sep 26

None
Thu Oct 3

None
Thu Oct 10

None
Thu Oct 17

None

Avalanche Activity- Southern Madison

Northern Madison
Sphinx Mountain
Whumph on The Sphinx
Incident details include images
Sphinx Mountain
AF-O
Elevation: 9,000
Aspect: N
Coordinates: 45.1582, -111.4770
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

From e-mail on Saturday 10/5, climbers on the Sphinx found these conditions: "We found a lot of snow on the Sphinx today following heavy precip since Sam’s report two days ago [see photo]. 3-5 cm in the parking lot, 20 cm at the Sphinx-Helmet col. Moderate SW winds had created drifts almost a meter deep in places on the traverse to the ice routes on the north face. I backed off after a whumph on a particularly exposed section of the traverse. We tried different ledge systems above and below the normal approach route but found similar snow conditions throughout."

Photo: From 10/3 prior to 8-10" new snow, "No snow hazard of much concern on the approach. However, a quick hasty pit in an isolated wind pocket revealed a CT1 on this layer.  ice axe is to the ground."


More Avalanche Details
Bridger Range
Fairy Lake
Small wind slab near Fairy Lake
Incident details include images
Fairy Lake
SS-AS-R1-D1-S
Elevation: 9,000
Coordinates: 45.9043, -110.9580
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

From e-mail: "The only places one could ski were wind pockets blown into the limestone fin features that in places were well over a foot. These spots were also where the snow was weirdest/posed any sort of avalanche hazard as you pretty much had to find a wind slab in order to ski anything! One group reported triggering a slab in one of these spots, but vis was too poor to see."


More Avalanche Details

Photos- Southern Madison

Displaying 1 - 13
  • A local near Fairy Lake gets a taste of fresh October snow and wind. "You know it's somewhat windy when the goats start closing their eyes and their beards get blown sideways." Photo: B. VandenBos

  • Strong westerly wind scoured snow off high ridgelines and slopes in the northern Bridger Range on Friday (10/11). Photo: B. VandenBos

  • Dry loose snow avalanches were observed on 10/10 as the recent snow settled. From e-mail "...saw some small, solar-initiated, dry loose snow slides in steep, rocky terrain (heads up ice climbers). With a firm surface beneath the new snow, these little guys were picking up steam quickly." Photo: B. VandenBos

  • Avalanche debris on the saddle near Hyalite Peak. This is indicative of the type of heavily wind loaded terrain near ridgelines where avalanches are most likely this time of year. Photo: B. VandenBos

  • We put up the Lionhead weather station on Tuesday, October 8th. There was 4-6" of snow above 8,000'. Photo: GNFAC

  • Broken off cornice on the saddle between Blackmore and Elephant on 10/5. "Snow was anywhere from inches deep with grass and rocks to hip deep. It was mostly knee deep though. Down in the flats below the bowl there was easily 8-10" fresh and another 2" on my way down..." Photo: @benjacobsenphoto

  • Ice Climbers on the Sphinx sent this photo from October 3, and noted,

    "No snow hazard of much concern on the approach. However, a quick hasty pit in an isolated wind pocket revealed a CT1 on this layer.  ice axe is to the ground." Photo: S. Magro

  • Wind transport of snow on Gallatin Peak, October 2, 2019. Photo: B. VandenBos

  • MSU SAW is October 9th from 5-9pm in SUB Ballroom A. www.montana.edu/outdoorrecreation/SAW.html for more info.

  • We hiked in to put up the Flanders weather station on 9/25 and found a spotty distribution of 4-6" of snow above 8,000'. Photo: GNFAC

  • Last weekend (9/23) there was about 14 inches of snow at 9,000'. Sun and warm temperatures created wet snow avalanches on slopes that face the sun. These small slides can be hazardous if they push you into the wrong terrain. Photo: Z. Drobnik

  • Last weekend (9/23) there was about 14 inches of snow at 9,000'. Sun and warm temperatures created wet snow avalanches on slopes that face the sun. These small slides can be hazardous if they push you into the wrong terrain. Photo: Z. Drobnik

  • Last weekend (9/23) there was about 14 inches of snow at 9,000'. Sun and warm temperatures created wet snow avalanches on slopes that face the sun. These small slides can be hazardous if they push you into the wrong terrain. Photo: Z. Drobnik

Videos- Southern Madison

WebCams


Raynolds Pass, Looking N

Weather Forecast Southern Madison

Extended Forecast for

20 Miles S Big Sky MT

Winter Weather Advisory October 19, 06:00am until October 20, 09:00am
Click here for hazard details and duration
Winter Weather Advisory
  • Overnight

    Overnight: A 20 percent chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 19. South southwest wind 9 to 13 mph.

    Slight Chance
    Snow

    Low: 19 °F

  • Saturday

    Saturday: Snow, mainly after 7am. The snow could be heavy at times.  Patchy blowing snow after noon. High near 27. South southwest wind 13 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches possible.

    Heavy Snow
    and Patchy
    Blowing Snow

    High: 27 °F

  • Saturday
    Night

    Saturday Night: Snow.  Patchy blowing snow before midnight. Temperature falling to near 20 by 11pm, then rising to around 26 during the remainder of the night. West wind 14 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible.

    Snow and
    Patchy
    Blowing Snow
    then Snow
    Likely

    Low: 20 °F

  • Sunday

    Sunday: A 50 percent chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 26. West northwest wind around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph.  New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

    Chance Snow

    High: 26 °F

  • Sunday
    Night

    Sunday Night: A 50 percent chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 19. West wind 10 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph.  New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible.

    Chance Snow

    Low: 19 °F

  • Monday

    Monday: A 50 percent chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 28. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

    Chance Snow

    High: 28 °F

  • Monday
    Night

    Monday Night: A 40 percent chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 26. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Chance Snow

    Low: 26 °F

  • Tuesday

    Tuesday: A chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 37.

    Chance Snow

    High: 37 °F

  • Tuesday
    Night

    Tuesday Night: A chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 25.

    Chance Snow

    Low: 25 °F

The Last Word

Get tickets for the 21st Annual Powder Blast Fundraiser on October 25th at The Emerson Ballroom.


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