Regional Conditions for Southern Gallatin

as of 5:00 am
May 25" | N/A
May 1 11" | N/A
Apr 30 2" | N/A
9460′     04/04 at 08:16
18.5℉
SW - 10mph
Gusts 17mph
9000′   06/20 at 15:00
51℉
-2″ Depth
Bottom Line: Spring and summer weather can be highly variable in the mountains, and creates a mix of avalanche problems to watch out for. Snow conditions and stability can change drastically from day to day or hour to hour. Anticipate change and plan accordingly. Abundant snowfall over the winter and more spring snow to come will make avalanches possible well into summer. More snow and wind will create unstable dry slabs and loose snow avalanches. Above freezing temperatures, rain and intense spring sun will weaken the snowpack and create wet avalanches. See our advisory page for general spring travel advice.

Past 5 Days

Fri Apr 20

None
Mon Apr 23

None
Fri Apr 27

None
Mon Apr 30

None
Wed May 2

None

Photos- Southern Gallatin

  • Wet slab avalanche in the Centennial range. Multiple days without freezing created widespread wet slides last week (5/6-5/11). Photo: @waxeman

  • Wet slab avalanche in the Centennial range. Multiple days without freezing created widespread wet slides last week (5/6-5/11). Photo: @waxeman

  • Wet slide carnage observed off of Skyline Ridge near Cabin Creek May 11/12. Many days of above freezing temperatures created widespread wet slide activity over the previous week. Photo: B. Lukens

  • Wet slide carnage observed off of Skyline Ridge near Cabin Creek May 11/12. Many days of above freezing temperatures created widespread wet slide activity over the previous week. Photo: B. Lukens

  • Massive cornices create a few hazards as they warm and weaken under the spring heat. They become easier to trigger, can break naturally, and form dangerous, deep cracks along ridgelines. From e-mail: "The crack was up to 30' deep, and had pulled large pieces of vegetation from the ridgeline it used to be attached to." Photo: S. Reinsel

  • From e-mail: "Photo of a couple of recent wet slab avalanches, just north of Silver Gate (on Mineral Mtn.). On a south aspect, around 9100'. The one on looker's left ran on April 23rd I think, and the one on looker's right April 27 or 28th. That's all the slab avalanches I've observed with these warm temps. Not a ton of wet loose activity to be seen either. Snowpack is holding in there!" Photo: B. Fredlund

  • Natural wet loose avalanches that slid during multiple days of well above freezing temperatures. Wet loose slides like this can run long distances and carry a lot of force. Multiple days with high temperatures of 50-60 F and overnight lows in the mid-30s to 40 F created a wet snowpack and wet slab and wet loose avalanches slid naturally. Photo: GNFAC

  • This small wet slab avalanches slid during multiple days of well above freezing temperatures. Though small, it is large enough to bury a person and would carry a lot of force. Multiple days with high temperatures of 50-60 F and overnight lows in the mid-30s to 40 F created a wet snowpack, and wet slab and wet loose avalanches slid naturally. Photo: GNFAC

  • Natural wet slab avalanche that ran during multiple days of well above freezing temperatures (4/26-4/28). Multiple days with high temperatures of 50-60 F and overnight lows in the mid-30s to 40 F created a wet snowpack and wet slab and wet loose avalanches slid naturally. Photo: GNFAC

  • Wet avalanches ran naturally last week during above freezing temperatures and sunshine after the last storm. Slides like this will be possible when the snowpack softens in the afternoon and will become more likely if the snowpack doesn't freeze overnight. Wet slides can run long distance and carry a lot of force. Photo: B. VandenBos

  • Recent snowfall followed by spring sunshine and above freezing temperatures created natural wet slab and wet loose activity. More slides like this are possible if temperatures do not freeze overnight, during heavy rain, or after the next snowfall. Photo: B. VandenBos

     

  • Cornices are massive and will break naturally with above freezing temperatures and hot, spring sun. Photo: B. VandenBos

  • Cornices are massive through the advisory area and will break naturally with above freezing temperatures and hot, spring sun. Photo: B. VandenBos

  • Cornices are a significant hazard this time of year. As temps warm above freezing, these overhanging masses of snow will become increasingly unstable. They can break farther back than you might expect and trigger large avalanches on the slopes below. They can fail naturally or with human triggers. 

  • This slide was triggered by the first skier of day off Saddle Peak. The skier was caught and carried 1,500 vertical feet. He was buried with his hand sticking out of snow. Unfortunately, he did not have a partner and was buried for over an hour. He did not survive. Photo: R. Gregoire   

  • This slide on Saddle Peak resulted in a fatality. It was triggered by a solo skier who was caught and buried. The slope was heavily wind loaded and the slide failed on a thin ice crust. Photo: R. Gregoire

  • Wet loose avalanches will be a growing concern as spring progresses. Sunshine, above freezing temps and rain can all produce dangerous wet snow avalanches. Watch for signs of instability such as roller balls, small point releases and wet snow above your boot top. Avoid being on or underneath steep slopes if signs on instability are observed. Photo: BBSP 

  • The crown ranged from 1-3' deep and was 75-100' wide. The avalanche was new, windblown snow on top of a thin ice crust. Aspect is east, slope angle is 37 degrees, and elevation is 9019'. Photo: GNFAC

  • Looking down the path with the burial location marked. Photo GNFAC

  • Looking down the path from the crown. The "X" marks the burial location. Photo: GNFAC

  • Looking uphill about half-way down the path. The crown can be seen at the skyline. Photo: GNFAC

  • The distance from the burial location to the crown line (seen at the top of path at the skyline) was 1500' vertical. The skier was buried with his hand sticking out of the snow. His head was about 1.5' from the surface.  Three rescuers got to him 75 minutes after he was caught. Photo: GNFAC

  • Large cornices loom over the slope where a skier triggered a fatal slide on Saturday (4/14) on Saddle Peak in the Bridger Range. Photo: P. Maleski

  • Both the crown and the victim's location are marked on the photo. The skier was carried 1500 vertical feet downslope and buried near the toe of the debris. Rescuers reached him 75 minutes after the slide occurred, but the avalanche was fatal. Photo: GNFAC

  • The avalanche was triggered by a solo skier, the first tracks of the day. The crown is marked, and the slide carried him down the path where he was fatally buried. Photo: GNFAC

  • A skier triggered the slide a few hundred feet from the top on a 37 degree rollover that was wind-loaded with the previous days 30" of new snow. The crown was 1-3 feet deep and 75-100 feet wide. Photo: GNFAC

  • The Bridger Bowl weather station is buried by the new snow. Photo: BBSP

  • May 3-4th, Give Big online fundraising campaign! This is our one-and-only financial appeal to our users. Check out our site at: https://www.givebiggv.org/organizations/friends-of-the-gallatin-national-forest-avalanche-center

     

  • Snow water equivalent of the snowpack at primary SNOTEL sites within the GNFAC advisroy area from October 1, 2017 through April 8, 2018.

  • These cornices at the head of Sunlight Basin in Taylor Fork are bigger than big. The snow lip is a solid 30 feet away from the true ridge crest and could easily fool a rider or skier into getting too close to the edge. We are finding similar cornices in all our ranges. As the temperatures warm these overhangs will start to lose strength. Photo: GNFAC

  • Debris from a cornice fall that pulled out a small wind slab on Mt. Bole in Hyalite (3/27). Photo: GNFAC

  • South of Cooke City, a recent slab avalanche up Republic Creek from Monday (3/26).  A wind loaded, north facing slope around 9,700'. Photo: B. Fredlund

  • A cornice fall triggered this avalanche on Lionhead Ridge that broke sometime late Saturday (3/24). Photo: B. Rasmussen

  • Reactive snow on steep edge of tree well. Sluffing or cracking on small rolls and micro-terrain features is a sign that loose slides or soft slabs are possible and may run far on larger, steep terrain. Photo: H. Coppolillo

  • Big Sky ski patrol triggered this slide with explosives on Sunday (3/25). It is in a heavily wind loaded pocket. Heavy snow and strong wind formed fresh slabs on Saturday. Many have gained strength, but are possible to trigger for a day or two. Photo: BSSP

  • Big Sky ski patrol triggered this slide with explosives on Sunday (3/25). Heavy snow and strong wind formed fresh slabs on Saturday. Many have gained strength, but are possible to trigger for a day or two. Photo: BSSP

  • There is 7' of snow on the ground in Bacon Rind (HS 240 cm) and it is stable today. The main concern is the new snow above the ice crust that formed 10 days ago (seen as the stripe behind the shovel) and in two snowpits our stability tests did not propagate. Melting, rain and/or more snow with wind would change the stability, but for now it's good. Photo: GNFAC

  • The snowmobiler walked to the edge of the ridge when the cornice broke carrying him over a cliff. Photo: Fremont Co. SAR

Videos- Southern Gallatin

Weather Forecast Southern Gallatin

Extended Forecast for

17 Miles SE Big Sky MT

  • This
    Afternoon

    This Afternoon: Isolated showers and thunderstorms. Some of the storms could produce small hail and gusty winds.  Partly sunny, with a high near 60. Southwest wind around 7 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 20%.

    Isolated
    T-storms

    High: 60 °F

  • Tonight

    Tonight: Isolated showers and thunderstorms before 9pm, then isolated showers between 9pm and midnight. Some of the storms could produce small hail and gusty winds.  Mostly cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly clear, with a low around 42. South wind 7 to 9 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 20%.

    Isolated
    T-storms then
    Partly Cloudy

    Low: 42 °F

  • Thursday

    Thursday: Isolated showers, then scattered showers and thunderstorms after noon. Some of the storms could produce small hail and gusty winds.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 65. Breezy, with a south wind 8 to 17 mph becoming west in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 24 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 50%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.

    Isolated
    Showers then
    Scattered
    Showers and
    Breezy

    High: 65 °F

  • Thursday
    Night

    Thursday Night: Scattered showers and thunderstorms before midnight, then isolated showers. Some of the storms could produce small hail and gusty winds.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 43. Breezy, with a west southwest wind 6 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 40%.

    Scattered
    Showers and
    Breezy

    Low: 43 °F

  • Friday

    Friday: Scattered showers, with thunderstorms also possible after noon. Some of the storms could produce small hail, gusty winds, and heavy rain.  Cloudy, with a high near 59. West wind 7 to 13 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 50%.

    Heavy Rain

    High: 59 °F

  • Friday
    Night

    Friday Night: Scattered showers and thunderstorms before midnight. Some of the storms could produce small hail, gusty winds, and heavy rain.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 42. West northwest wind 6 to 13 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 30%.

    Heavy Rain
    then Partly
    Cloudy

    Low: 42 °F

  • Saturday

    Saturday: Scattered showers, with thunderstorms also possible after noon. Some of the storms could produce small hail and gusty winds.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 56. West wind 6 to 10 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 40%.

    Scattered
    Showers

    High: 56 °F

  • Saturday
    Night

    Saturday Night: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly before midnight.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 39.

    Chance
    Showers then
    Slight Chance
    T-storms

    Low: 39 °F

  • Sunday

    Sunday: A 20 percent chance of showers before noon.  Partly sunny, with a high near 62.

    Slight Chance
    Showers then
    Partly Sunny

    High: 62 °F

The Last Word

Have a safe and enjoyable spring and summer. See you when the flakes start to fly next Fall! -Doug, Eric, and Alex


  <<  This is the most recent advisory.