Regional Conditions for Centennial Range

as of 5:00 am
Apr 300″ | N/A
Apr 29 1″ | N/A
Apr 28 1″ | N/A
8775′     /00 at :
- mph
Gusts mph
7750′   05/18 at 11:00
38℉
45″ Depth
Bottom Line: Avalanches will be mostly confined to new snow that falls. Shallow wet slides are possible if rain or warm temperatures melt the snow surface. Anticipate new snow stability to decrease with wind, sun or above freezing temperatures. Be aware of deeper wet slides if the snowpack doesn’t freeze overnight, or if there is heavy rain. Now is just as important as ever to be diligent with snowpack assessment and choose terrain carefully. See our forecast page for general spring snowpack and travel advice.

Snow Observations- Centennial Range & Lionhead

Centennial Range
Centennials - Montana
Hell Roaring Creek
Incident details include images

Remote triggered several slides from bottom of slope on south facing slope.

Full Snow Observation Report
Centennial Range
Centennials - Montana
Hellroaring Drainage
Incident details include images

Shallow snowpack ~30", west facing terrain around 8200' is faceted except for the top 6 inches. We observed poor structure and fair to good strength due to a lack of distinct layering (its mostly facets top to bottom).

On an east facing slope at 8,300' we observed a slightly deeper snowpack, but still widespread faceting. Poor structure but good strength. During a pit test at this aspect we did not get propogation on any layers (on 1/5/19.) This was all before the most recent round of snowfall however, clearly the facets present a major persistent layer that will cause issues with increased loading.

Full Snow Observation Report
Centennial Range
Reas Peak
Snowmobile triggered avalanche near Reas Peak
Incident details include images

From e-mail:"a snowmobile triggered slide in a S aspect in the Blue Creek Drainage SE of Reas Peak in the Centennials.  No one was caught and no injuries "

Full Snow Observation Report
Centennial Range
Centennials - Montana
Hellroaring Drainage: Huge "Whumphs"
Incident details include images

I was in the Hellroaring Drainage Yesterday, snow depths below 7,000' hover around 18", around 8,000' snow depths increase significantly but are still shallow i.e. less than 30". Witnessed the largest "whoomphs" I have ever felt (that's saying something since last Decemeber/Jan was horrendous), interestingly much of this was felt returning on the same skin track, telling me this is a stubborn layer that may not give right away. The largest was a collapse in a meadow nearly 0.25 miles long.

Full Snow Observation Report
Centennial Range
Give us your observations!
Incident details include images

After last season's two snowmobiler avalanche fatalities on Reas Peak in the Centennial Range we created this web page so riders could get good, relevant information regarding snowpack and avalanches. Although the Centennial Range is not part of the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center's forecast area, we are the closest avalanche center and have valuable information to share.

  • The snowpack in the Lionhead area outside West Yellowstone is typically very similar to the Centennial Range. When we issue Avalanche Warnings in Lionhead, the Centennials are also dangerous. Pictures, photos, and observations from the Lionhead area are windows into the conditions in the Centennials.
  • We designed this web page to be a one-stop-shop for anyone riding or skiing in the Centennials.
  • We need your observations to keep everyone safe. Fill out a form and let us know what you found and attach pictures or videos.
  • If you are riding in other parts of southeastern Idaho, go to avalanche.org and find the nearest avalanche center to get updated information. The snowpack and avalanche concerns in regions adjacent to avalanche centers are typically similar:
  • Another great resource for avalanche information can be found at the Adam Anderson Avalanche Project on Facebook.
  • Avalanche Education is paramount to making good decisions. All avalanche education in Idaho is listed HERE.
  • If you would like to sponsor a 1-hour avalanche awareness class for your store, club, or organization, drop us a line. We may be able to accommodate that.

Do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or suggestions. This webpage is a work in progress. Email us at mtavalanche@gmail.com

We hope everyone has a safe season!

GNFAC Forecasters:

Doug Chabot
Alex Marienthal
Eric Knoff
Ian Hoyer

Full Snow Observation Report

Avalanche Activity- Centennial Range & Lionhead

Northern Madison
Fan Mountain
Natural wet slabs on Fan Mtn.
Incident details include images
Fan Mountain
WS-N-R3-D3-O
Elevation: 10,000
Coordinates: 45.2991, -111.5220
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

Natural wet slabs were widespread on Fan Mtn. near Big Sky during the week of 5/13-5/16.


More Avalanche Details
Northern Madison
Beehive Basin
Natural Wet Slab in Beehive
Incident details include images
Beehive Basin
WS-N-R4-D2.5-O
Elevation: 9,600
Aspect: S
Coordinates: 45.3508, -111.4040
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

Skiers saw a large wet slab that released naturally sometime before 0745 on Tuesday (5/14). 


More Avalanche Details
Bridger Range
Saddle Peak
Natural wet slab on Saddle Peak
Incident details include images
Saddle Peak
WS-NC-R2-D2.5-O
Elevation: 9,000
Aspect: E
Coordinates: 45.7952, -110.9350
Caught: 0 ; Buried: 0

Wet slab released naturally Tuesday (5/14/19) evening on Saddle Peak. "South side of 1/4 Saddle slid sometime last night. Looks like cornice drop then step down to near ground. Hi yesterday at Alpine was 62." -R. Elliott/BBSP


More Avalanche Details

Photos- Centennial Range & Lionhead

Displaying 41 - 60 of 60
  • This graph shows snow water equivalent (SWE) by date at the primary SNOTEL sites that we use in the GNFAC region. From October 1st, 2018 to January 12th, 2019. Steeper lines indicate bigger storms and flatter lines indicate periods of little to no snow. A large storm at the beginning of Novermber laid down a 1-3 foot base. Relatively dry and cold weather through November caused much of that snow to become weak. This weak snow was buried by a series of storms. Avalanches were seen during and following many of these storms. During dry weather between storms, more weak layers formed on the surface of the snowpack and were subsequently buried. (Graph created by GNFAC from NRCS provisional data).

  • A snowmobile triggered avalanche that broke during the last week's avalanche cycle at Lionhead. Multiple (5+) Natural and snowmobile triggered slides were reported between 1/7 and 1/9. On 1/6-1/7 the area got a foot of heavy snow followed by strong winds. This loaded an unstable snowpack that is poorly supported by 1.5' of sugary snow on the ground. Avalanches broke 2-3 feet deep on this weak snow, and propagated relatively wide. Photo: GNFAC

  • A snowmobile triggered avalanche that broke during the last week's avalanche cycle at Lionhead. Multiple (5+) Natural and snowmobile triggered slides were reported between 1/7 and 1/9. On 1/6-1/7 the area got a foot of heavy snow followed by strong winds. This loaded an unstable snowpack that is poorly supported by 1.5' of sugary snow on the ground. Avalanches broke 2-3 feet deep on this weak snow, and propagated relatively wide. Photo: GNFAC

  • A snowmobiler triggered a slide in Lionhead on Tuesday, January 8. Photo: D. Mintus

  • A sledder remote triggered several slides from the bottom of a south facing slope in the Centennial Range, Hell Roaring Creek. Photo: B. Marsh

  • A sledder remote triggered several slides from the bottom of a south facing slope in the Centennial Range, Hell Roaring Creek. Photo: B. Marsh

  • Avalanche triggered remotely by a snowmobiler near Lionhead Ridge on January 7, 2019. From email "24 inch crown and about 200 feet wide... on an easterly wind loaded slope"

  • A snowpit on Lionhead revealed two weak layers. One was under wind blown snow; the other was 1.5 feet above the ground on a thick layer of sugary facets. Photo: GNFAC

  • From e-mail: "This was a snowmobile triggered slide in a S aspect in the Blue Creek Drainage SE of Reas Peak in the Centennials.  No one was caught and no injuries as far as I can tell".

  • This avalanche in Airplane Bowl off Lionhead Ridge, is south facing at 9,000'. The avalanche was 1-2' deep, 100' vertical and 150' wide (estimated). It likely broke late Sunday or Monday (12/31), during or immediately after the Avalanche Warning. Weak, faceted snow could not support the weekends snowstorm and there were widespread slides. Photo: GNFAC

  • Collapsing and cracking in Watkins Creek in Lionhead. The snow is weak and collapses like this indicate instability. Photo: B. Rasmussen

  • Collapsing and cracking in Watkins Creek in Lionhead. The snow is weak and collapses like this indicate instability. Photo: B. Rasmussen

  • The snowpack at 9,000' above Hebgen Lake near West Yellowstone is 60-70cm (~2 feet) deep. It is mostly weak, sugary facets and will struggle to support the weight of future storms. Photo: GNFAC

  • From email: "7,500' West facing in the Hellroaring Drainage 12/22/18"

    Photo: S. Hansen

  • A skier reported a recent slab avalanche at Ernest Miller in the southern Madison. This is a good reminder that as you move further south in our advisory area, we are seeing a thinner and generally less stable snowpack. Photo: C. Grote

  • The Lionhead area near West Yellowstone has the shallowest and weakest snowpack in our forecast region. The bottom half of the pack consists of weak, sugary facets. This well developed weak layer produced unstable results in stability tests on any slope that had wind drifted snow. With more snow and wind in the forecast, this area will experience increasingly unstable conditions. Photo GNFAC  

  • Yesterday at Lionhead Ridge near West Yellowstone we found a shallow and weak snowpack. A foot of weak, sugary snow on the ground will create unstable conditions where it is buried by thick drifts of snow, and when the area gets more snow later this week. Photo: GNFAC

  • Snow water equivalent at SNOTEL stations in the GNFAC advisory areas for the 18-19 season to date. Weak layers formed on the surface of the snowpack during the dry weather (flat section of lines), then they were buried by the recent 10-14" of snow (steep increase at end of graph). Image: GNFAC

  • From an email:

    "By and large right side up snowpack. Some small facets below the 11/1 ice crust at the ground, but well bonded snowpack overall. Pit observations consistent with hand pits dug throughout the day touring north out of Bridger Bowl." Photo: M. Zia

Videos- Centennial Range & Lionhead

Weather Forecast- Centennial Range

Extended Forecast for

10 Miles ESE Lakeview MT

  • Today

    Today: A slight chance of snow before 9am, then a slight chance of rain and snow showers between 9am and 10am, then rain showers after 10am. Some thunder is also possible.  High near 43. Southeast wind 10 to 14 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 80%. Total daytime snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Slight Chance
    Rain/Snow
    then Showers

    High: 43 °F

  • Tonight

    Tonight: Rain showers before 9pm, then rain and snow between 9pm and midnight, then snow after midnight. Some thunder is also possible.  Low around 32. East wind 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.

    Rain/Snow
    then Snow

    Low: 32 °F

  • Monday

    Monday: Snow before noon, then rain and snow showers between noon and 3pm, then rain showers after 3pm. Some thunder is also possible.  High near 39. Northeast wind 10 to 16 mph becoming south in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 20 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible.

    Snow then
    Rain/Snow

    High: 39 °F

  • Monday
    Night

    Monday Night: Rain and snow showers likely before 9pm, then rain and snow likely between 9pm and midnight, then a chance of snow after midnight. Some thunder is also possible.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 30. East wind 8 to 10 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Rain/Snow
    Likely then
    Chance Snow

    Low: 30 °F

  • Tuesday

    Tuesday: A chance of snow before 11am, then rain showers. Some thunder is also possible.  High near 41. East wind 10 to 18 mph becoming north in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 23 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 80%. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Chance
    Rain/Snow
    then Showers

    High: 41 °F

  • Tuesday
    Night

    Tuesday Night: Snow likely.  Cloudy, with a low around 31. Blustery.  Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

    Snow Likely
    and Blustery

    Low: 31 °F

  • Wednesday

    Wednesday: Snow likely before noon, then snow showers likely after noon. Some thunder is also possible.  Cloudy, with a high near 35. Breezy.  Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

    Snow Likely
    and Breezy

    High: 35 °F

  • Wednesday
    Night

    Wednesday Night: A chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 27.

    Chance Snow

    Low: 27 °F

  • Thursday

    Thursday: A chance of snow before noon, then a chance of snow showers after noon. Some thunder is also possible.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 38.

    Chance Snow

    High: 38 °F

The Last Word

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


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