Category Don Carpenter

Conditions Update – Teton Pass area

        Take a look at these graphics: The top chart is from Bruce Tremper’s Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain.   The top chart shows the timeline of stabilization after a storm event on different weak layers.  Storm snow instabilities tend to stabilize quickly after the storm and slabs on persistent weak layer take […]

Ski Tour in Mail Cabin, Teton Pass

Yesterday’s tour from 7200′ to 8900′  showed just how much variability there was at the mid-elevations. Shady slopes skied very well with boot top facets hissing and sluffing when it got steeper. By and large all slopes were currently stable, but there was a lot of weak snow around waiting for a load (in some cases […]

Conditions update – Mt. Glory, Teton Pass

Don, Don and Zahan headed up the Glory bootpack today to check out the snowpack in upper elevation north facing slopes.  These slopes – north facing slopes above 9500 are the slopes where the early season snow never melted…it remained on the slope, getting weaker and weaker. Check out the video of the ECT they […]

Conditions Update – Christmas Tree Bowl, Teton Pass

Don and I were up on Teton Pass yesterday. We spent a little time digging in the snow before we enjoyed the 5″ of snow that fell overnight. Check out the pit from mid-elevations:

What happens if you get hurt….thoughts on winter preparedness

The day was unfolding like so many before. A foot of fresh snow in the last 24 hours made for excellent skiing. It was snowing hard with moderate visibility. We had skied two runs and a third sounded good. The shot in mind was similar to the last two. But what looked like a well […]

Why do we follow the season history?

Why do we care about the early season snowpack? Avalanche forecasters follow the formation of the early season snowpack, as it will be the foundation of the snowpack for the season. The goal of tracking the snowpack is to have a handle on what kinds of avalanche problems we will see.  Not all avalanches are […]

Elk and Early Season Snowpack

The walk had taken us thirty minutes in the dark and as we were coming out of the thick trees we spotted them.  There were about twenty five elk.  They had no idea we were there and we crouched and ran along the tree line to try to cut them off.  That was when we […]