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  1. #1
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    Default US Rocky Mtn Conditions Updates 2012 season....

    Visiting the Rocky Mountain US for adventures in the snow?
    Post the conditions you found in the area you ride. Be sure to include some pictures.

    MomsMotorSports will be taking 10 trips this season in search of the deep powder. I will be posting conditions and area updates. Be sure to visit our web page for more pictures, video in Flatlanders Online Updates. Log on to join the club and book at trip for you or your group.

    This weeks visit Cooke City, Montana.....January 8th-13th Cooke City, MT

    I will also be posting during these future trips too.

    January 22nd-27th Cooke City, MT
    February 5th-10th Island Park, ID(West Yellowstone)
    February 12th-16th Cooke City, MT
    February 19th-24th Lava Mountain, WY
    February 26th-March 1st Ten Mile, WY
    March 5th-10th Island Park, ID(West Yellowstone)
    March 18th-23rd Island Park, ID(West Yellowstone)
    April 1st-6th Ten Mile, WY
    April 15th-20th Ten Mile, WY

    Here are some pictures and conditions updates from today, more to come this week.


    Snowy Range December 12-11
    There is snow out there but it is a little light right now with just 30-40 inches of base around 10,000 ft. There are pocket of powder hiding here and there. Lots of sugary snow to too. Quite a few rocks and stumps plus, a few of the creeks are still running. Still lots of fun to be had.

    Dusty and Rick back enjoying the Snow
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    D.O.T. Steve taking in the mountain air
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    Last edited by jmom800x; 01-08-2012 at 09:02 PM.

  2. #2
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    Counting the Days....25 till Cooke

  3. #3
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    here is a little video update.......
    Video Link

    look for more Flatlanders Online this season.

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    12-12 Snowy Range Update....
    Another mild and sunny day made for some great playing for most of the guys. They are calling for some fresh snow tonight and tomorrow. One group of the guys went to the top of Kennedy and the other to the flats and med bow range. Not great snow but, it is way more then back home. Everybody had some fun getting stuck and playing. Here is some proof.

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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by RevKev View Post
    Counting the Days....25 till Cooke
    Looks like we will ride together at IP. Cooke for me is Jan. 22-27.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by polarisrider1 View Post
    Looks like we will ride together at IP. Cooke for me is Jan. 22-27.
    Yup, Cooke has changed for me, Im on the Jan 8 to 13th, so IP it is.

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    12/13 Ten Mile, WY, in the Snowy Range.
    A very light dusting over the cold night created a little base but the sugar snow is out there.
    Some of the guys went to the face of the mountains today. Two other groups headed north in search of some boondocking and deep snow. After hitting some creeks and meadows a few guys stopped to enjoy the view at widow maker. The creek in the coaster is still open and the rocks are out in full force over there.IMG_1832-web.jpgIMG_1829-web.jpgIMG_1820-web.jpgIMG_1817-web.jpg

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    First time in the last 5 years that I am not west this week. Looks like I got ground to make up. We would like to see the rumored replacement sled Rick got for this year!

  10. #10
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    The Snowy Range, 12/14
    Well, there is fresh powder on the mountains. It snowed last night and all day. It is starting to accumulate at elevation. The groomers are out and smoothing all the trails in the north west area. The groomer was STUCK briefly on the trail today, he had to make 3 runs at the hill. We had a blast pushing powder over the hood most of the day.
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  11. #11

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    Glad to see you found Fresh PoW, Looking forward to Cooke in January.

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    12/15 Snowy Range
    Fresh, Fresh, Fresh......
    The weather held cold today with about a foot of fresh at elevation yesterday and overnight it should make for a good weekend of riding. Most of us hung in the meadow edges and trees today in search of the deep pockets.
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    Nice conditions! Glad to see some folks are getting into fresh snow. I got to ask, what's the deal with the yellow monkey? I've seen in it in most of your guys videos/pics. Mascot?

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    The monkey.....Learn more about Dusty and keep up with him by following this link.... 'What Is Dusty Doing?'


    Lots of fresh powder.
    Here is the Video update from Day 5.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpEpP34VoXQ

  16. #16
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    Gotta love all the fresh snow.

  17. #17
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    It is so tough to watch and not be there. Cooke City still 5 weeks away for me.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by polarisrider1 View Post
    It is so tough to watch and not be there. Cooke City still 5 weeks away for me.
    Only 3 weeks for me

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by RevKev View Post
    Only 3 weeks for me
    You Rat!!!!! LOL. We got a whole 1/2" of snow at home.

  20. #20
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    Jacob,

    Tell Rick that Keith, The Arctic Cat Guy, is going to take him up on that backup sled. I'm sure his brandnew Highcountry will break down by the second day or he'll be tired of digging it out every 20 feet.

    Love the Horns on the helmet!!

    Have a great Christmas. Looks like you guys already got your Xmas present early.

    Barry (Illinois gang)

  21. #21
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    Default Christmas at Ten Mile

    Quote Originally Posted by winterrules03 View Post
    Jacob,

    Tell Rick that Keith, The Arctic Cat Guy, is going to take him up on that backup sled. I'm sure his brandnew Highcountry will break down by the second day or he'll be tired of digging it out every 20 feet.

    Love the Horns on the helmet!!

    Have a great Christmas. Looks like you guys already got your Xmas present early.

    Barry (Illinois gang)
    Thanks, Looking forward to April.
    It is always early Xmas in the Snowys.
    Christmas Tree Video From Ten Mile

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEjC2VlVVPk
    Last edited by jmom800x; 01-08-2012 at 08:44 PM.

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    Default Cooke City, Montana January Update, with the Flatlanders from MomsMotorSports

    Cooke City, Montana at Bear Claw Bobs, The Bear Claw Bakery and Super 8....Always great :happydance

    This weeks update, January 8th-13th.
    After the 34 hour road trip, 23 sleds unloaded fast at 1 a.m. Then 17 Flatlanders from MomsMotorSports.Com hit the hills in Cooke today. There is snow out here. We dropped Daisey and played in the valley all afternoon. 17 sleds and no carnage so far. There seems to be a decent base building in some areas. Just like most of the Rocky Region there is a load of sugar snow on the hills under the crust.
    Here are a couple of still shots, video update to come.....

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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmom800x View Post
    Cooke City, Montana at Bear Claw Bobs, The Bear Claw Bakery and Super 8....Always great :happydance

    This weeks update, January 8th-13th.
    After the 34 hour road trip, 23 sleds unloaded fast at 1 a.m. Then 17 Flatlanders from MomsMotorSports.Com hit the hills in Cooke today. There is snow out here. We dropped Daisey and played in the valley all afternoon. 17 sleds and no carnage so far. There seems to be a decent base building in some areas. Just like most of the Rocky Region there is a load of sugar snow on the hills under the crust.
    Here are a couple of still shots, video update to come.....

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    Thank you Jacob. Keep the reports coming.

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    Default Cooke City Flatlanders Update


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    Quote Originally Posted by jmom800x View Post
    January 8th Ride
    Nice! So what "award of the day" do you get for getting your foot/boot stuck in the track?!?

  26. #26
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    Rob,

    You would think they would put you on something other than those hungry cats. Now they are trying to eat your gear.. Be careful out there and feed that cat before you go out riding.

    Barry

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    Quote Originally Posted by techsledder View Post
    Nice! So what "award of the day" do you get for getting your foot/boot stuck in the track?!?
    That was Rob the camera man. You would be amazed at what he gets himself into. 11 more days and I will be out there riding with some of you lucky guys who get to turn and burn right back out!

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    Cooke City, January 9th Update.
    No fresh snow today but the forecast is calling for some soon :happydance
    We hit two areas today between our groups. A few went to 'top'. It is sketchy getting there but, that is where the untracked powder is for now. The rest of us headed out for some view of the fog invading the valleys early in the day. Then we were on a quest for some of the patches of untracked snow in pockets here and there. There crust is setting up on top and is fairly stiff in the trees. The sugar is underneath and in pockets around tress and creeks.

    Here are a couple from our adventures today.

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  29. #29
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    MomsMotorSports and Flatlanders Video Update for January 9th, Cooke City, MT

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DANsKWEdfuw

  30. #30
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    Default Fresh Snow In Cooke

    Rev Kev Plowing Some Pow
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    Fresh Snow
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  31. #31
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    Default Fresh Snow and Cold Temps In Cooke

    Cooke City, MT

    A brisk night, fresh snow and a very cold day made for some fun in the hills. The snow had a good base today due to the frigged weather.

    Avy Report From Avalanche.orgMadison and Gallatin Ranges, and the mountains around Cooke City:

    Yesterday’s snow was light density, 5% powder. Less than half an inch of water (SWE) fell in the Gallatin, Madison and Cooke City Ranges. This will not add much stress to the snowpack except in areas wind-loaded with the storm. Eight inches of airy fluff are now blown into 1-2 foot thick drifts. Winds were not confined to the ridgetops either; strong winds cross-loaded lower slopes too. With anemometers showing north to west winds at ridges and south to east winds at lower elevations, you’ll be able to find wind-loading on most aspects. To complicate things further, Cooke City even has ridgetop winds blowing from the rare direction of east.

    The avalanche message is simple: Wind-loading is bad. Our mountains have various layers of weak, sugary facets that will have a difficult time supporting a wind drift (video). The snow surface before the storm was also feathery crystals of surface hoar and near surface facets (snowpit), now buried and unstable. The avalanche danger is CONSIDERABLE on all wind-loaded terrain today, no matter its steepness. Even slopes slightly wind-loaded will be sensitive to triggering. On sheltered slopes the avalanche danger is rated MODERATE.


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  32. #32
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    Default Cooke Video Update

    MomsMotorSports and Flatlanders Video Update

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AaCPgarMsHo

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    great vids, nice job guys.

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    Default Todays Update From Cooke

    Quote Originally Posted by kwarp View Post
    great vids, nice job guys.
    Thank You.

    Today's Update

    Blue skies made for another great day in the mountains in Cooke today.
    Temperatures over night were cold around -8 at 7am, the high today was about 20.

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    Avalance.Org Report For Cooke below

    1/12/12 The Bridger, Madison and Gallatin Ranges, the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone, and the mountains around Cooke City:

    Now is a difficult time. Since the large storm on New Year’s Eve, the snowpack has adjusted to the stress of that snow, and it has become harder to trigger an avalanche. Signs of instability are not obvious. Yesterday I skied in the Sheep Creek drainage north of Cooke City where the snowpack gave me a false sense of security because it felt “good” under my skis. This feeling does not mean slopes were stable and I was easily tricked. With a sharp eye, my partner pointed out many avalanche crowns from last week that were not easy to see. Weak layers in the snowpack were not obvious either because there is a supportable slab covering them. The only way to identify these weak layers is to dig a snowpit and perform stability tests.

    In most areas 1-2 ft of snow rest on top of a variety of weak layers including buried surface hoar, near-surface facets, and depth hoar. Yesterday on Mt Ellis in the northern Gallatin Range, Doug found buried surface hoar. It gave him no signs of instability until he dug a snowpit. It was an obvious stripe in the snowpit wall and easily fractured in stability tests (photo). Nearby in Hyalite Canyon, conditions are generally more stable, but some slopes have a weak layer buried about 2 ft deep (video). To further complicate matters near West Yellowstone, yesterday’s fresh snow capped another layer of surface hoar that will be a future concern (photo). This layer was also observed near Big Sky by the Moonlight Basin Ski Patrol where it exists on slopes sheltered from the wind.

    On isolated slopes, winds blew yesterday’s snow into drifts and formed fresh wind slabs. These drifts and wind slabs should not be trusted. They can make the difference between slopes that avalanche and ones that do not. Karl showed this difference in a recent video taken in the Bridger Range (video).

    Riding in avalanche terrain now is like running a yellow light that turns red just as you pass through the intersection. You can get away with it sometimes, but eventually you’ll either get a ticket or cause an accident. Today human triggered avalanches are definitely possible, and the avalanche danger is MODERATE.

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    Looking good Jacob. Ask "the Angry American" if I can drop my sled off at his house this Sunday night. I can spend some quality time with Mrs. Mom until he gets home!!!! That will make loading a hair quicker in GR. Smurfriders sled will be in GR.

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    Oops, repost
    Last edited by jmom800x; 01-13-2012 at 09:47 AM.

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    Cooke City, MT January 22nd Update....

    After the long haul out from Michigan and unloading 26 sleds out of the trailer. 29 flatlanders are back in Cooke.
    A short day of riding was in order.
    Lots of fresh snow around town and in the areas we did make it to in the couple of hours we rode.
    Avy danger is super high. Hanging in the meadows and pines made for a challenge with the new snow. The couple of feet give a false sense of security, as you ride along the bottom will fall right out on you.


    This was inviting, lots of new snow and then we had to dig the sleds out.
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  38. #38

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    wow i love the pic of the sleds under all that pow, sure helps to see you guys riding after our meltdown here

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    Quote Originally Posted by zrt001 View Post
    wow i love the pic of the sleds under all that pow, sure helps to see you guys riding after our meltdown here
    Ya, all that fresh was inviting until looking at digging those sleds out.

    Cooke City, MT Jan 23rd Ride Update......
    Lots of fresh out in the area. With the avy danger being high we had a Flatlander Support Group Meeting at the 'top' to play in the meadows, trees and lakes. Boy the snow on 'top' is deep. Lots of untracked deep stuff. The new snow is quite 'sticky' and packs well making for tough stucks when the sugary bottom drops out.
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    The Southern Madison Range, Lionhead area near West Yellowstone and mountains around Cooke City:

    Yesterday's calm weather allowed the snowpack to take a deep breath and start adjusting to last week's storm snow. This has helped overall stability. However, the pack is still far from achieving equilibrium.

    The most recent storm deposited 3-4 inches of SWE, which fell on a very weak foundation of faceted snow. This weak layer is widespread in the mountains around West Yellowstone and is found on many slopes in the mountains around Cooke City. On Saturday, Mark observed a large natural avalanche on Scotch Bonnet which failed on facets formed prior to this latest storm (photo, video). Yesterday, riders in the Lionhead remotely triggered two avalanches on wind loaded slopes, a poignant reminder of the unstable conditions that exist in that area.

    The avalanche hazard is trending down, but human triggered avalanches remain likely today and the avalanche danger is rated CONSIDERABLE


  40. #40
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    Cooke City, January 24th Update
    Most of this weeks Flatlander Crew from MomsMotorSports headed up to the top again in search of the deep snow. A few of us headed north east to the lakes and boundary areas in search of some closer untracked pockets. The guys up on top had some carnage. A-arms and shocks, maybe more. Out to the north east is pretty tracked up already but there are lots of pockets with deep snow. Most of the hills and climbs are clean though. Unfortunately the avy danger is too high to mess with them now.
    Pictures and Video from today to come in the a.m.

    Avalanche.org report......
    The southern Madison and southern Gallatin Ranges, Lionhead area near West Yellowstone and mountains around Cooke City:

    Even though the weekend avalanche warning in the southern mountains expired, this area still remains quite active. Outside Cooke City yesterday a snowmobiler was buried in an avalanche on Scotch Bonnet near Lulu Pass (photo). Luckily his arm was sticking out of the snow and nearby skiers dug him out. This near miss is just one of a string. On Saturday, a massive slide on Scotch Bonnet was triggered from hundreds of feet away and later that same day a snowmobiler was partially buried on Henderson Mountain in an avalanche he triggered and was unable to outrun. Mark was there and posted a video and picture of the activity. On Sunday, a snowboarder triggered a slide near Lulu pass on a south facing slope and released another slide sympathetically. A layer of small-grained facets buried under four feet of new snow since last Monday (5” SWE) is the unstable weak layer.

    In Lionhead on Sunday, there were multiple avalanches remotely triggered by snowmobilers. One notable slide broke on a low angle 30 degree slope from 300 feet away. Yesterday, another natural avalanche was seen in Cabin Creek by Ace Powder Guides. Weak, large-grained sugary snow is breaking a foot or two off the ground from the recent snows.

    The avalanche warning this weekend denoted hair-trigger conditions with many avalanches releasing naturally or being triggered from afar. Things have improved since then, but only slightly. Touchy, dangerous conditions still exist in the southern mountains. A few inches of new snow with winds will keep the backcountry dangerous. For today, the avalanche danger is rated HIGH on all wind-loaded slopes and CONSIDERABLE elsewhere. Unfortunately, around Cooke City the more popular lines to ride or ski are usually wind-loaded

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    Cooke City, MT - January 25th ride report
    It was a day for the trees at elevation. The wind was whipping around the light accumulation fiercely making visibility very low on 'top'. We managed to tuck in some meadows and play off the smaller lake edges avoiding the wind for mos of the day.
    The snow up top is blowing and drifting in pockets making for some fluffy powder. Our tracks from Tuesday had vanished before our arrival this morning, making for a pleasant ride in new snow.

    Avalanche.Org Report....
    In the last 24 hours mountain temperatures have risen to 20F with strong westerly winds blowing 25-30 mph and gusts over 50 mph. Scattered snow showers dusted the Bridger Range and dropped 1-2 inches everywhere else. Continued showers today and tonight will drop 2-4 inches favoring the southern areas. Winds will remain strong and temperatures will hover near 20F. Tomorrow looks to be the snowiest day of the week.

    The southern mountains, including Cooke City and the Lionhead area, have serious stability concerns (video). Mark and Karl were in Lionhead yesterday. Avalanches from the weekend were numerous; however, what gave them pause was a large, fresh, natural avalanche that broke with only two inches of new snow (photo). They dutifully dug snowpits, but found inconsistent results in their stability tests. No matter, recent avalanches provided the bulls-eye information they were looking for. The snowpack is weak and unsupportable. Carving a turn would easily sink the track down into the facets. Foot penetration was to the ground. A skier in the Bacon Rind area commented it was easy to investigate the snowpack when it’s at chest level. Snow during the past week has created slabs and increased stress. A few collapses and poor stability test results were all he needed to stick to sub 30-degree slopes.

    The Cooke City area has gotten snow nine out of the last ten days. Natural avalanches and many human triggered slides, some triggered from afar, partially buried snowmobilers on Saturday and again on Monday (photo). Remote triggering is scary stuff since we can release avalanches from flat terrain, hundreds of feet below the starting zone. Seeing natural avalanches in Lionhead after a paltry two inch snowstorm, plus remote triggering in Cooke City is conclusive evidence that the avalanche danger is rated CONSIDERABLE on all slopes today.

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    A small video from yesterdays adventure in Cooke City


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    Nice "captian bizerko" this could very well take off as its own film series. i have seen him go bizerko on small trees rock jumps and other items which could very well make good film.

    Flatlanders feature Captian Bizerko....... I am sure you and Rob can take it from here

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    Just had breakfast with Doug Chabot from Avalanche.org, very enlightening conversation regarding avy conditions here in the Rocky West. He and his partner are heading up to dig some pits and analyze the conditions today. Preliminary reports show a heavy ice crust on south and east facing slopes and wind loading on east facing slopes with the new light snow. Some north facing slopes seem to be a bit safer at this point. They are going to check out the self on Henderson today. Then they will head up to crown butte.

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    From Jan 7th, West Yellowstone.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGgbRQHSeHY



    Sounds like all got out just fine. Funny thing is, I would have no qualms going up this little chute and up that same small slope. Whoa! That is some really highly unstable Avy conditions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by techsledder View Post
    From Jan 7th, West Yellowstone.
    Whoa! That is some really highly unstable Avy conditions.
    Unstable and unpredictable...

    Island Park, ID update February 5th and 6th.

    In IP now with a load of 21 flatlanders from MomsMotorSports

    The snow is still here. The fresh that fell last week has settled and the tracks were abundant in the canyon area. A few of the guys from the other group went to the hills on the west range. Deeper snow, steeper terrain though and there have been a few natural slides in the area.

    Here is the report form Avalanche.org
    Yesterday, Doug investigated a large natural side that occurred in the Lionhead area on Friday (video). He found an avalanche that broke up to 3 feet deep, three hundred feet across and ran nearly 800 vertical. It was a hard slab that failed on facets near the ground. What was surprising about this avalanche is that it naturally released after the area received only a few inches of new snow. This illustrates the weak and fragile nature of the snowpack in the mountains near West Yellowstone.

    The snowpack in the mountains around Cooke City is spatially variable. Some slopes have a deeper, stronger snowpack while others have a layer of facets buried 3-4 deep that is still causing avalanches. Slopes with a southerly aspect have the widest distribution of this layer. On Thursday I remotely triggered a large slide on the south face of Mt Abundance (photo) and on Saturday riders observed a natural avalanche in the same area (photo).

    A calm weather pattern over the past few days is making it more difficult to trigger avalanches. However, it is still very possible to trigger a slide on slopes steeper than 35 degrees. Avalanches will be easier to trigger in areas where the snowpack is thinner, such as rock outcroppings or thin scoured areas.

    Today, the avalanche danger is CONSIDERABLE on slopes steeper than 35 degrees. Less steep slopes have a MODERATE avalanche danger.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyQnowJtw8U
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Roll-over video from yesterdays ride


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    Location
    Ashland WI
    Posts
    191

    Default

    YEAH SKINNEY,

    I think you should have been able to hang on to that one

  49. #49
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    272

    Default

    Island Park, ID - February 7th,8th and 9th.

    Blue bird skies here in Island Park this week making for some great views. The set-up hero snow makes exploring and boondocking up hill in the valleys and trees easy. Some snow is in the forecast and it is greatly needed. We have covered some ground here in IP looking for the fresh deep snow. The big area on the west edge is fairly tracked up and there is evidence of natural slides from the past week. To the north and east the snow is sunbaked and hard with about 2 inches of snow and 2 inches of hoar frost.

    Weather and avy report from Avalanche.org
    Yesterday was a splitter day with lots of sun, temperatures in the teens and light winds. Ridgetop winds picked up slightly last night and are currently blowing 15-25 mph out of the west to southwest. Winds will continue today as temperatures rise into the mid 20s. Valley fog will give way to sunny skies this morning before more clouds roll in tonight and drop an angstrom or two of snow (one ten-millionth of a millimeter, aka flurries). By the way, has anyone seen La Nina? She’s missing and frankly I’m upset with her.

    As the snowpack strengthens and becomes less hair-trigger determining stability becomes more slope specific. A few slopes are good, some are fair, and a few are still very poor. The skiers did not dig any pits because they did not have to; Mother Nature gave them the equivalent of a flashing neon warning and they stuck to low angled terrain. In general, my confidence with this snowpack is low. I don’t completely trust it. For today, the avalanche danger remains CONSIDERABLE on slopes steeper than 35 degrees and MODERATE on less steep.

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  50. #50
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    minnesota
    Posts
    24

    Default

    Im going next year for sure, looks like a super time!!!!

  51. #51
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Outstanding in my field.
    Posts
    801

    Default

    Well not in the US but part of the Rockies... BC. Avy vid worth watching. Story on FB is "His Snowpulse pack probably saved him"

    http://vimeo.com/36328077

  52. #52
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Milltown Wisconsin
    Posts
    653

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by techsledder View Post
    Well not in the US but part of the Rockies... BC. Avy vid worth watching. Story on FB is "His Snowpulse pack probably saved him"

    http://vimeo.com/36328077
    Looks to me like that area had slid previously? Lucky he had the airbag!

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