Trip Planning for Lionhead Range

as of 5:00 am
Today0″ | 30-50 SW
Dec 7 3″ | 15-30 W
Dec 6 0″ | 20-35 SW
8775′  12/08 at 07:08
18℉
W - 24mph
Gusts 34mph
7750′   12/08 at 7:00
28℉
10″ Depth
Bottom Line: New snow and very strong westerly wind has increased the chances of triggering an avalanche, especially in gullies or near ridges. Retreat as soon as you see cracks shooting out in front of you and be extra careful around smooth wind pillows. Small avalanches are indicative that more, possibly bigger ones are possible. Ice climbers triggered a slide in Hyalite on Sunday and yesterday a small avalanche was seen near Lulu Pass outside Cooke City, both involving wind-loaded slopes. These unstable conditions are widespread and you need to assess steep slopes, especially those with wind drifts.
Primary Problem: Wind-Drifted Snow

Past 5 Days

Fri Nov 26

None
Mon Nov 29

None
Fri Dec 3

None
Mon Dec 6

None
Today

None

Relevant Photos

Displaying 1 - 8
  • New snow was blown into thick drifts that can be triggered by skiers or riders. Cracking like this is a sign that drifts are unstable and could slide on steeper slopes. Photo: GNFAC

  • From email (12/5/21) : "Small avalanche triggered while approaching ice climb in East fork of Hyalite basin. 

    Another D1 natural avalanche was observed later in the day similar aspect/elevation

    NE @7600’
    SS-AFu-D0.5-I"

    Photo: A. Schoening

  • Skiers on Mount Blackmore observed cracking within the freshly wind-loaded snow on a southeast-facing slope just below the ridge (11/24/21). Photo: J Schack

  • Snowcover on Lionhead ridge begins at about 7,000' in elevation on 11/16. Snowmobiling or skiing from Targhee Pass looks very thin and patchy. Photo: GNFAC

  • Taken on 11/16, consistent snow on all aspects begins around 7,000 feet. 1.5-2 feet of snow is found above 8.500'. Photo: GNFAC

  • From e-mail 11/7/21: "...Once in airplane bowl we saw multiple large slides that ran last night, syn-storm. Most of which came down from the East face of Sac. A few 200-300’ wide and running the length of the bowl.,,, attached is a grainy cell phone pic of the slides in Airplane Bowl." -Anonymous.

  • From email 11/4/21: "...noticed two small wet loose avalanches in the east facing bowl between Pomp and Hardscrabble Peaks." Photo: H. Darby

  • From e-mail 11/4/21: "Hiking up in the Bridger Range from Sacagawea Pass and noticed no faceting of the current snowpack. The snow near the pass and on the ridge is very wind affected as is to be expected and dropping into the bowl on the east side of the Pass the snowpack there has a distinct sun crust. Dug around a little bit at 8600 ft on a NE aspect and found a sun crust of about two inches with what felt like rounded grains below that. Even in the direct sun, the crust was taking a long time to rewarm and was pretty slippery..." Photo: H. Darby

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Rendezvous Ski Trail, W. Yellowstone

Snowpit Profiles- Lionhead Range

 

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Weather Forecast Lionhead Range

Extended Forecast for

10 Miles WNW West Yellowstone MT

  • Today

    Today: Snow likely, mainly after 1pm.  Patchy blowing snow after 4pm. Areas of fog before 11am.  Otherwise, cloudy, with a high near 25. Breezy, with a south southwest wind 20 to 25 mph, with gusts as high as 37 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 70%. Total daytime snow accumulation of around an inch possible.

    Snow Likely
    and Patchy
    Blowing Snow

    High: 25 °F

  • Tonight

    Tonight: Snow likely, mainly before 10pm.  Patchy blowing snow before 11pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 8. Wind chill values as low as -5. Breezy, with a west wind 15 to 22 mph, with gusts as high as 32 mph.  Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

    Snow Likely
    and Patchy
    Blowing Snow
    then Slight
    Chance Snow

    Low: 8 °F

  • Thursday

    Thursday: A 30 percent chance of snow before 11am.  Mostly sunny, with a high near 14. Wind chill values as low as -10. West southwest wind 13 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph.  New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Chance Snow
    then Mostly
    Sunny

    High: 14 °F

  • Thursday
    Night

    Thursday Night: A 40 percent chance of snow, mainly before 11pm.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 4. Wind chill values as low as -10. West southwest wind around 14 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.  New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Chance Snow

    Low: 4 °F

  • Friday

    Friday: A 40 percent chance of snow.  Partly sunny, with a high near 10. West southwest wind 13 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph.  Little or no snow accumulation expected.

    Chance Snow

    High: 10 °F

  • Friday
    Night

    Friday Night: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 5. Southwest wind 17 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph.

    Mostly Cloudy

    Low: 5 °F

  • Saturday

    Saturday: A 20 percent chance of snow before 11am.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 15. Breezy, with a south southwest wind 20 to 26 mph, with gusts as high as 39 mph.

    Breezy.
    Slight Chance
    Snow then
    Mostly Cloudy

    High: 15 °F

  • Saturday
    Night

    Saturday Night: A chance of snow, mainly after 11pm.  Mostly cloudy, with a low around 14. Breezy, with a south southwest wind around 23 mph, with gusts as high as 32 mph.

    Chance Snow
    and Breezy

    Low: 14 °F

  • Sunday

    Sunday: A chance of snow.  Mostly cloudy, with a high near 22. Breezy.

    Chance Snow
    and Breezy

    High: 22 °F

The Last Word

Bruce Jamieson of Snowline has posted avalanche science and training videos for backcountry travelers. These are worth checking out as we wait for more snow to fall.