Saturday, November 15, 2014

Alta Snowfall

Thanks to a few hours of low-density snowfall this morning, the overnight and morning totals in upper Little Cottonwood aren't looking too bad.

Automated interval board observations at the Collins site show the 3 inches that fell Thursday night.  The board was wiped between the 1600 MST and 1700 MST observation, then you can see the accumulation of about 10 inches of snow through 0900 MST this morning (ignore the spurious 34 inch observation at 0600 - one of the hazards of automated snow measurements are the occasional spurious observations).  It appears the board was wiped this morning between 0900 and 1000 MST with a 3 inch accumulation after the wiping.  That observation seemed a little odd given that only .01" was observed by the rain gauge.  If it is legit, that would give us an event total of 16 inches and an overnight total of 13 inches.  If not, it's more like 13 and 10.

I believe that Collins Gulch is currently closed to uphill skiing.  If you are considering venturing up the summer road, we have a new snow study station installed in upper Albion Basin that we are calling "Top Cecret."  Since we're not currently wiping the interval board, it is essentially acting as a total depth sensor.  Note the increase since Thursday from about 8.5 inches to a peak of about 21 at 0900 (ignore the spikes > 45 those are also spurious) for an event total of about 12.5 inches and an overnight accumulation of about 11 inches.

Water equivalent at the two sites was 0.74" at Alta-Collins and 0.7" at Top Cecret.  I wish I could move the decimal point one digit to the right as we really need a good wet, heavy base-building snowfall.  With an unsettled snow depth of 20 inches at Top Cecret, it's best to call this pre-early-season conditions.

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