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Information about Cascade Snowdepth Measurement Sites

(last updated April 2005)

See the main Cascade Snowfall and Snowdepth page for historical snowpack info.
Detailed Snow Season Reports: 2005-2006, 2004-2005, 2003-2004, 2002-2003; see also Previous Seasons and Cascades El Niño / La Niña
NEW: Historical NWAC Snowdepth Data & Plots and Paradise & Crater Lake Snowfall/Snowdepth Plots



    Skimountaineer.com has tracked the snowdepth data recorded at numerous sites along the entire length of the Cascade Range since the 2002-2003 season, on a monthly and now semimonthly basis. This data is painstakingly compiled from numerous separate sources, both government and private-sector, including snow surveys, avalanche forecast offices, and ski areas. This is the only comprehensive summary available anywhere of snowpack conditions throughout the Cascade Range in BC, WA, OR, and CA. It includes primarily sites which are on or near the Cascade volcanoes, along with a few other interesting sites in the North Cascades of WA. Over 40 sites are now tracked in the semimonthly reports, but numerous other low-elevation and low-snowdepth sites which are of limited interest to skiers have been omitted due to time and space limitations. The table below has brief information about each of these snowdepth measurement sites, including the period of record and expected normal (average) snowdepths at the beginning of each month during the usual Cascade snow season (November to July). This information was collected primarily for my own reference, but it may be interesting or useful for others. The historical records on which the normals are based are easily available online for the BCRFC, NRCS, and CCSS snow surveys, while records for other sites are less trivial to obtain.
    The frequency of data collection varies at these sites, from hourly automated telemetry to manual daily or monthly measurements. Note that multiple sites or data sources are found at several of these locations, and their data values typically differ slightly from each other. The codes used below for Data Frequency read as follows: H = Hourly Snowdepth Telemetry, H* = Hourly Snow-Water Telemetry, D = Daily Manual Snowdepth (snow stake), M = Monthly Manual Snowdepth (snow course data, generally taken Jan 1–May 1 for CCSS, Jan 1–June 1 for NRCS, and Jan 1–June 1 plus May 15 and June 15 for BCRFC), A = April 1 Manual Snowdepth Only (snow course data). Daily snowfall records (and thus annual averages) are available for only a few of the sites marked "D". See the info from California snow surveys and NRCS snow surveys to learn more about manual snow courses, or the info from NRCS SNOTEL and BCRFC to learn more about automated snow telemetry. Unfortunately, most manual snow courses managed by NRCS (including those in OR and WA) were discontinued in the 1980s, replaced by a smaller number of automated SNOTEL sites which typically provide only snow-water equivalent and not snowdepth (although they do offer the huge advantage of hourly telemetry versus monthly manual measurements). Most of the NRCS SNOTEL sites listed here were installed in the late 1970s and early 1980s to replace existing manual snow courses (these sites have older "M" data listed), and snowdepth gauges are finally being added to many of these older sites. In addition, a number of newer SNOTEL sites have been built since the mid 1990s (not associated with former snow courses), most notably several sites near Mounts Baker and Saint Helens.
    The normal snowdepth values listed in the table below for the first of each month are based on data over the full period of record. In several cases, early and late season averages (Nov-January and June-July) are based on only a small number of available data points, or they have been estimated using snow-water content to calculate snowdepth if only snow-water telemetry is available for some years. Such limited-sample and estimated values may have significant inaccuracies, and therefore they are italicized below. It is difficult to accurately estimate normal snowdepths for sites which have an insufficient period of snowdepth records (less than 10 years), and those for which historical snowdepth data is missing or otherwise not publicly available (unfortunately, snowdepth data for NRCS SNOTEL sites is not available online except for the current water year).


CURRENT SITES:   List of data sites for semimonthly reports during the 2004-2005 season
State /
Prov.
Measurement Site Location Elevation
Data Source
and Frequency

Period of
Record

Normal Snowdepths on First of Month
Annual
Snowfall

 Nov   Dec   Jan   Feb   Mar   Apr   May   Jun   Jul 
BC Tenquille Lake (east of Mt Meager)5500 ft BC RFC
M
H*, H
1953–
2000–
—  —  68"90"108" 116"105"74"—   —  
Upper Squamish River (NW of Cayley)4400 ft BC RFC H*, H1989–, 1995– 10"53"97"120"137" 146"130"83"20"—  
Callaghan Creek (east of Mt Cayley)3400 ft BC RFC M1976– —  —  40"59"75" 77"60"17"—  —  
Whistler Mtn, Pig Alley (N of Garibaldi) 5400 ftSki Area D1973– 10"42"63"81"95" 102"92"62"14"457"
Orchid Lake (south of Mt Garibaldi) 3900 ft BC RFC M1972– —  —  80"107"145" 166"157"99"—  —  
Grouse Mountain (North Vancouver) 3600 ft BC RFC M1936– —  —  51"80"99" 113"103"—  —  —  
3700 ft Ski Area D1971– 2"29"57"87"106" 122"91"34"11"325"
WA Mt Baker Ski Area (NE of Mt Baker) 4200 ft Ski Area
NWAC
D
H
1926–
1990?–
7"48"90"124"151" 175"142"80"22"643"
Mt Baker, Wells Creek (north side)4200 ft NRCS H*, H1995–, 1997– 2"15"40"55"65" 73"56"18"3"—  
Mt Baker, MF Nooksack (NW side)5000 ft NRCS H*, H2002– 5"28"56"82"99" 123"110"74"10"—  
Mt Baker, Elbow Lake (SW side)3200 ft NRCS H*, H1995–, 1997– 1"16"46"67"80" 87"59"20"2"—  
Rainy Pass (far NE of Glacier Peak)4800 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1930–
1982–, 2002–
—  —  66"87"100" 101"91"35"—  —  
Park Creek Ridge (E of Cascade Pass)4600 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1928–2000
1979–, 1999–
—  —  69"107"117" 109"85"26"—  —  
Stevens Pass (far south of Glacier Peak) 4000 ft Ski Area
NWAC
D
H
1939–
1990?–
6"31"62"87"99" 101"83"24"2"494"
Stevens Pass [snow course / SNOTEL]4000 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1946–1987
1980–, 2002–
—  —  75"103"121" 127"109"60"—  —  
Snoqualmie Pass (far NE of Mt Rainier) 3000 ft Ski Area
NWAC
D
H
1929–
1990?–
2"25"52"79"90" 86"61"6"0"440"
Crystal Mtn Ski Area (NE of Rainier) 4400 ft Ski Area
NWAC
D
H
1967–
1990?–
—  24"40"58"64" 69"75"—  —  321"
Chinook Pass (east of Mt Rainier) 5600 ft NWAC H1990?– snowdepth records not readily available —  
Mt Rainier, Sunrise (NE side) 6400 ft NWAC H2003– insufficient period of snowdepth record —  
Mt Rainier, Paradise (south side) 5400 ft NPS
NWAC
D
H
1926–
1990?–
10"48"91"132"158" 175"161"122"44"692"
White Pass (north of Goat Rocks) 4500 ft Ski Area D1976– —  20"35"52"56" 54"25"—  —  —  
White Pass E. S. [snow course / SNOTEL]4500 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1953–
1980–, 2002–
—  —  35"51"59" 63"54"28"—  —  
Pigtail Peak (N of Goat Rocks)5900 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1961–1985
1981–, 1997–
—  —  88"135"150" 159"139"106"—  —  
Mt Saint Helens, Swift Creek (S side)3800 ft NRCS H*, H2002– 3"25"56"82"107" 124"117"72"5"—  
Mt Saint Helens, June Lake (SE side)3300 ft NRCS H*, H1984–, 2003– 2"20"49"71"79" 78"53"12"2"—  
OR Mt Hood, Timberline Lodge (S side) 6000 ft Ski Area
NWAC
D
H
1973–
1990?–
—  45"76"117"140" 163"152"—  —  550"
Mt Hood Test Site (south side)5400 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1937–
1980–, 1997–
—  —  70"100"123" 140"134"—  —  —  
Mt Hood, Government Camp (SW side)4000 ft NCDC D1951– 3"15"31"45"46" 40"14"2"0"270"
Mt Hood Meadows Ski Area (SE side) 5200 ft Ski Area
NWAC
D
H
1974–
1990?–
—  41"72"100"119" 124"115"—  —  438"
Hogg Pass (near Santiam Pass)4800 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1938–1983
1979–, 2002–
—  —  50"76"91" 102"91"40"—  —  
McKenzie (NW of Three Sisters)4800 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1939–1992
1981–, 2003–
—  —  52"73"91" 99"89"—  —  —  
Mt Bachelor Ski Area (north side) 6300 ft NRCS
Ski Area
M
D
1930–
1960?–
—  —  62"89"104" 116"105"64"—  366"
Cascade Summit (NE of Diamond Peak)4900 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1929–1989
1980–, 1998–
—  —  42"60"69" 75"59"16"—  306"
Crater Lake, Caldera Rim (SW side) 7100 ft NWAC H1990?– snowdepth records not readily available —  
Crater Lake, Park HQ (SW side) 6400 ft NPS
NWAC
D
H
1931–
1990?–
7"32"65"95"113" 122"100"50"5"528"
Crater Lake, Annie Springs (SW side)6000 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1929–
2000–
—  —  53"81"99" 108"91"45"—  —  
Fourmile Lake (east of Mt McLoughlin)6000 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1950–1983
1978–, 1998–
—  —  40"47"60" 63"48"7"—  —  
Mt McLoughlin, Billie Creek (SE side)5300 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1929–1983
1978–, 2002–
—  —  30"45"53" 53"33"3"—  —  
CA Medicine Lake (west side of caldera) 6700 ft CCSS A
H*
1940–
1985–
2"17"33"47"65" 79"42"11"1"—  
Mt Shasta, Horse Camp (SW side)7900 ft CCSS M1930– —  —  76"88"108" 122"108"—  —  —  
Mt Shasta, Old Ski Bowl (south side) 7600 ft MSAC H2002–   snowdepths probably comparable to previous site —  
Mt Shasta, Sand Flat (SW side) 6800 ft CCSS M
H*, H
1945–
1983–, 1998–
2"21"56"73"93" 100"82"23"3"—  
Mt Shasta, Brewer Creek (east side)6200 ft CCSS M1945– —  —  —  56"74" 80"55"—  —  —  
Lassen Peak, Manzanita Lake (NW side) 5800 ft NPS D1949– 0"6"15"22"26" 18"5"0"0"190"
Lassen Peak, Lake Helen (south side)8200 ft CCSS M
H
1930–
2003–
—  —  82"122"151" 178"162"—  —  —  
Lassen Chalet (SW of Lassen Peak) 6700 ft NPS D1986– 4"22"58"86"111" 104"80"—  —  450"

OTHER SITES:   Some of these may be added to the list for the 2005-2006 season
State /
Prov.
Measurement Site Location Elevation
Data Source
and Frequency

Period of
Record

Normal Snowdepths on First of Month
Annual
Snowfall

 Nov   Dec   Jan   Feb   Mar   Apr   May   Jun   Jul 
BC Bridge Glacier (north of Mt Meager)4600 ft BC RFC
M1995– —  —  47"61"65" 69"61"—  —   —  
Conflict Lake (north of Mt Cayley)4500 ft Ski Area D2002?– insufficient period of snowdepth record —  
Town of Whistler (N of Mt Garibaldi)2200 ft ECNCA D1976– 0"7"18"24"25" 9"0"0"0"158"
WA Beaver Pass (far east of Mt Baker)3700 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1944–
2001–
—  —  47"59"70" 79"67"22"—  —  
Washington Pass (far NE of Glacier Pk) 5500 ft NWAC H1990?– snowdepth records not readily available —  
Lyman Lake (NE of Glacier Peak)5900 ft NRCS M
H*
1928–2000
1979–
—  —  94"121"140" 142"138"—  —  —  
Stampede Pass (far NE of Mt Rainier)3900 ft NWAC D1943– 4"31"58"88"100" 101"81"20"1"439"
Stampede Pass [snow course / SNOTEL]3900 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1945–1982
1982–, 2002–
—  —  61"88"107" 114"95"37"—  —  
Mt Rainier, Longmire (SW side)2800 ft NCDC D1931– 1"5"16"25"28" 22"5"0"0"170"
Mt Adams, Potato Hill (north side)4500 ft NRCS M
H*
1950–1985
1983–
—  —  54"69"77" 84"81"—  —  —  
Mt Saint Helens, Spirit Lake (N side)3500 ft NRCS H*, H1985–, 2004– 0"6"10"14"16" 9"1"0"0"—  
Mt Saint Helens, Sheep Canyon (W side)4000 ft NRCS H*1983– 2"22"44"60"71" 77"60"22"3"—  
OR Red Hill (N of Mt Hood)4400 ft NRCS M
H*
1948–1989
1978–
—  —  52"69"89" 102"86"—  —  —  
Blazed Alder (NW of Mt Hood)3600 ft NRCS H*, H1981–, 1996– 2"18"39"59"69" 69"47"9"0"—  
Three Creeks Mdw (E of Three Sisters)5600 ft NRCS M
H*
1928–1989
1980–
—  —  18"37"46" 48"30"—  —  —  
Summit Lake (south of Diamond Peak)5600 ft NRCS M
H*
1928–1976
1978–
—  —  —  82"96" 108"100"—  —  —  
Diamond Lake (west of Mt Thielsen)5300 ft NRCS M
H*, H
1937–1989
1980–, 2004–
—  —  29"44"51" 54"40"8"—  —  
Pelican Butte, Cold Springs (NW side)6100 ft NRCS M
H*
1959–1989
1981–
—  —  —  69"77" 87"77"23"—  —  
CA Mount Shasta Ski Park (south side) 5500 ft Ski Area D1985– snowdepth records not readily available
City of Mount Shasta (SW side)3600 ft NCDC D1948– 0"1"6"5"2" 1"0"0"0"104"
Thousand Lakes (north of Lassen Peak)6500 ft CCSS M1946– —  —  —  61"79" 80"63"—  —  —  
Harkness Flat (SE of Lassen Peak)6200 ft CCSS M1930– —  —  36"52"68" 68"42"—  —  —  
Feather River Meadow (south of Lassen)5400 ft CCSS M1930– —  —  29"42"56" 55"29"—  —  —  
Mineral, Park HQ (SW of Lassen Peak) 4900 ft NPS D1948– 0"4"13"20"20" 9"2"0"0"153"

SNOWFALL SITES:   Sites from the lists above which have daily and year-to-date snowfall data
(NOTE: monthly snowfalls may not sum to annual total due to roundoff error)
State /
Prov.
Measurement Site Location Elevation
Data Source
and Frequency

Period of
Record

Normal Snowfall during the Month
Annual
Snowfall

 Sep   Oct   Nov   Dec   Jan   Feb   Mar   Apr   May   Jun 
BC Town of Whistler (N of Mt Garibaldi)2200 ft ECNCA
D  1976– 0"3"24"45"37" 26"18"6"1"0" 158"
Whistler Mtn, Pig Alley (N of Garibaldi) 5400 ftSki Area D1973– 5"33"55"85"78" 70"69"36"20"5" 457"
Grouse Mountain (North Vancouver) 3700 ft Ski Area D1971– 0"6"44"71"58" 53"51"34"6"0" 325"
WA Mt Baker Ski Area (NE of Mt Baker) 4200 ft Ski Area D19??– missing monthly snowfall data 643"
Stevens Pass (far south of Glacier Peak) 4000 ft Ski Area D1950– 1"17"70"97"112" 80"73"35"9"1" 494"
Snoqualmie Pass (far NE of Mt Rainier) 3000 ft Ski Area D1931– 0"7"44"92"107" 81"78"27"5"0" 440"
Crystal Mtn Ski Area (NE of Rainier) 4400 ft Ski Area D1967– missing monthly snowfall data 321"
Mt Rainier, Paradise (south side) 5400 ft NPS D1948– 3"28"91"125"132" 100"109"64"23"5" 692"
Mt Rainier, Longmire (SW side) 2800 ft NPS D1931– 0"1"14"36"45" 33"29"11"1"0" 170"
OR Mt Hood, Government Camp (SW side)4000 ft NCDC D1951– 0"6"31"51"59" 42"47"26"7"1" 270"
Mt Hood Meadows Ski Area (SE side) 5200 ft Ski Area D1974– missing monthly snowfall data 438"
Mt Bachelor Ski Area (north side) 6300 ft Ski Area D1960?– missing monthly snowfall data 366"
Crater Lake, Park HQ (SW side) 6400 ft NPS D1931– 3"21"64"94"105" 85"84"45"20"4" 528"
CA City of Mount Shasta (SW side)3600 ft NCDC D1948– 0"1"10"25"28" 19"15"7"1"0" 104"
Lassen Peak, Manzanita Lake (NW side) 5800 ft NPS D1949– 0"3"18"32"36" 34"34"22"8"1" 190"
Lassen Chalet (SW of Lassen Peak) 6700 ft NPS D1986– — 17"43"82"99" 86"70"45"8"—  450"
Mineral, Park HQ (SW of Lassen Peak) 4900 ft NPS D1948– 0"1"11"27"35" 30"30"15"3"0" 153"



The graph below summarizes snowdepths at 10 important sites throughout the entire Cascade Range. Place your mouse over the links below to compare
the same plot for several previous seasons with normal values for the period of record (this only works if you have a JavaScript-enabled browser).

Mouse-over links to change season graph, click to load season report: 2002-2003 | 2003-2004 | 2004-2005 | 2005-2006 | Normals




Data on this page provided by:
        Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center, Mount Shasta Avalanche Center, Oregon & Washington Snow Surveys (NRCS),
        California Cooperative Snow Surveys, British Columbia River Forecast Centre & Snow Surveys,
        Western Regional Climate Center, National Climatic Data Center, Environment Canada National Climate Archive,
        Mount Rainier, Crater Lake, and Lassen Volcanic National Parks,
        Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort, Mount Baker Ski Area, Stevens Pass Ski Area, and Mount Bachelor Ski Resort.

Detailed Snow Season Reports: 2005-2006 | 2004-2005 | 2003-2004 | 2002-2003 | Previous Seasons | Normals & Info | Cascades El Niño / La Niña
Table of Contents | Introduction | Ratings | WebCams | Bibliography | Highest Volcanoes | Snowfall & Snowdepth | Monthly Chart | Conifers | Compare | Distance | Sun Chart
Ski Mountaineering Photos & Trip Reports Equipment & Info Cascade Volcanoes Ring of Fire Site Map

Amar Andalkar   Seattle, WA, USA   <About the Author / Contact Me>
All material on this website is ©1997-2014 by Amar Andalkar unless otherwise noted.
Last modified Sunday, January 29, 2006