Observations: Spencer's Creek Snowdepth 2017

jonathanc

One of Us
Ski Pass
Aug 4, 2014
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Nice call. You beat Cin by 2.
I'd like to know your theory on calling 175 this week?
My reasoning for the 178cm guess was a 6:1 precip ratio (rather than the 10:1 in some of the charts posted) and then took off a bit for compaction.
 
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Red_switch

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jun 5, 2006
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My reasoning for the 178cm guess was a 6:1 precip ratio (rather than the 10:1 in some of the charts posted) and then took off a bit for compaction.
A 6:1 precip ratio is 16% SWE density, which is probably pretty reasonable - off the top of my head that's probably around the lowest density I've measured for recent storm snow in a snow pit in NZ. 1:10 is the holy grail around here, and rarely seen.

It usually doesn't take long for settled snow to reach a density around 30% around here (NZ), and unless you get decent facet growth it'll stay around there until it goes isothermic in spring.
 
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Rabid K9

A Local
Ski Pass
Jul 15, 2008
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A 6:1 precip ratio is 16% SWE density, which is probably pretty reasonable - off the top of my head that's probably around the lowest density I've measured for recent storm snow in a snow pit in NZ. 1:10 is the holy grail around here, and rarely seen.

It usually doesn't take long for settled snow to reach a density around 30% around here (NZ), and unless you get decent facet growth it'll stay around there until it goes isothermic in spring.

Off the top of your head RS, what are some are of the other densities you've seen / know of in other area countries (i.e.: Honshu, / Hokkaido, Austria / Italy, US etc)?
 

Red_switch

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jun 5, 2006
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Off the top of your head RS, what are some are of the other densities you've seen / know of in other area countries (i.e.: Honshu, / Hokkaido, Austria / Italy, US etc)?
Occasionally read numbers of 6-8%, although that seems to mostly appear in older literature...
 

Snow Blowey

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jan 7, 2004
26,220
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Dubbo NSW
Anyone closer than Cin's 184?

Geez. Only 179!
Do people think this is because it's SC is closer to CP and they didn't get as much as Thredbo and Perisher ?
Or did the metre plus dump compact down more than most thought.

I don't see how CP ever does not get as much snow as Perisher and Thredbo. It is smack in the middle of the two, up on the same plateau as Perisher - only closer to the main range. The slope that the measuring locations are on would never get less snow than Perisher from a classic NW and W dump.

I think Perisher and Thredbo just did a bit of double accounting for the social media beat up.
 

BlueHue

One of Us
Ski Pass
Apr 17, 2003
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South of Cooma
When estimating SC depths I take reported snowfall totals from Thredbo, Perisher and CP. If they are close I use an average, if there are outliers I usually default to CP. I then take 60-70% of the total accumulated snow for the week to allow for depth of snow once settled and add to previous weeks reading (unless the snow was unusually dry in which case I allow closer to 50% for settled snow depth and ~80% if the snow was water filled stodge). If there's no significant warmth or wet for the week that's my guess. If there has been significant loss I stab myself, read the patterns in the blood and take a wild guess at how much loss before adjusting my guess for SC snow depth.
 

Hemsley

One of Us
Apr 24, 2015
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I don't see how CP ever does not get as much snow as Perisher and Thredbo. It is smack in the middle of the two, up on the same plateau as Perisher - only closer to the main range. The slope that the measuring locations are on would never get less snow than Perisher from a classic NW and W dump.

I think Perisher and Thredbo just did a bit of double accounting for the social media beat up.

All things being equal it seems like a very good season, across the board . Yes the bigger resorts talk themselves up , however there has been good snow fall, with more to come. Hopefully next week we crack the 2m mark. Anyway I'm going to the pub.
 
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Lady Penelope

One of some lot ...
Ski Pass
Sep 7, 2014
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Canberra
All things being equal it seems like a very good season, across the board . Yes the bigger resorts talk themselves up , however there has been good snow fall, with more to come. Hopefully next week we crack the 2m mark. Anyway I'm going to the pub.
2 metres? Ambitious! Given the significant clear precipitation likely on Tuesday and Wednesday I am sadly predicting a loss.
 

Lady Penelope

One of some lot ...
Ski Pass
Sep 7, 2014
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Canberra

rocketboy

One of Us
Ski Pass
Sep 9, 2010
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Gerroa
Neither of those linked reports explained much at all about the actual process of measuring the snow depth. There was a shot of the core being weighed. But no subsequent explanation of how the equation is constructed used to arrive at a final number.
 

MarkV

One of Us
Ski Pass
May 4, 2016
652
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Perisher Valley Forecast
No warnings for New South Wales

Forecast issued at 4:45 am EST on Sunday 13 August 2017.

Forecast for the rest of Sunday
Summary
snow.png

Max 4
Possible morning snow shower.
Possible rainfall: 1 to 2 mm
Chance of any rain: 40%
rain_40.gif

Alpine area
Partly cloudy. Medium (40%) chance of snow showers this morning. Winds west to northwesterly 30 to 45 km/h tending northwesterly in the late evening.

Sun protection recommended from 10:50 am to 1:50 pm, UV Index predicted to reach 3 [Moderate]

7 day Town Forecasts
Precis Icon Location Min Max
snow.png
Thredbo Top Station – 2
snow.png
Perisher Valley – 4
Monday 14 August
Summary
partly-cloudy.png

Min -2
Max 8
Partly cloudy.
Possible rainfall: 0 to 0.4 mm
Chance of any rain: 20%
rain_20.gif

Alpine area
Partly cloudy. Slight (20%) chance of light rain. Snow possible above 1900 metres. Winds west to northwesterly 35 to 50 km/h decreasing to 25 to 35 km/h in the evening.

Sun protection recommended from 10:50 am to 1:50 pm, UV Index predicted to reach 3 [Moderate]

Tuesday 15 August
Summary
rain.png

Min -2
Max 6
Rain. Windy.
Possible rainfall: 5 to 15 mm
Chance of any rain: 80%
rain_80.gif

Alpine area
Cloudy. High (80%) chance of rain in the afternoon and evening. Winds westerly 20 to 30 km/h turning northwesterly 35 to 55 km/h during the morning then increasing to 40 to 60 km/h during the afternoon.

Sun protection recommended from 10:40 am to 2:00 pm, UV Index predicted to reach 4 [Moderate]

Wednesday 16 August
Summary
snow.png

Min 0
Max 3
Snow at times. Windy.
Possible rainfall: 8 to 15 mm
Chance of any rain: 70%
rain_70.gif

Alpine area
Cloudy. High (70%) chance of snow, most likely in the morning. Winds northwesterly 35 to 55 km/h.

Sun protection recommended from 10:40 am to 2:00 pm, UV Index predicted to reach 4 [Moderate]

Thursday 17 August
Summary
snow.png

Min -1
Max 1
Snow showers.
Possible rainfall: 8 to 15 mm
Chance of any rain: 95%
rain_95.gif

Alpine area
Cloudy. Very high (95%) chance of snow showers. Winds northwesterly 30 to 40 km/h decreasing to 20 to 30 km/h during the morning.


A bit of loss, followed by a bit of gain. Maybe about the same figure as last week?
 
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Red_switch

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jun 5, 2006
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Neither of those linked reports explained much at all about the actual process of measuring the snow depth. There was a shot of the core being weighed. But no subsequent explanation of how the equation is constructed used to arrive at a final number.
With a Mt Rose sampler the depth doesn't really matter. What the hydrologists are interested in is SWE, snow water equivalent, which that instrument measures directly. But it does have a depth scale on the side for reference.

Presumably they have some snowboards throughout their snowcourse? Back calculating snow depth from SWE would raise a few eyebrows...

Also, that weatherzone video shows one of the major problems for using those samplers in "warm" snowpacks.
 

Snow Blowey

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jan 7, 2004
26,220
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Neither of those linked reports explained much at all about the actual process of measuring the snow depth. There was a shot of the core being weighed. But no subsequent explanation of how the equation is constructed used to arrive at a final number.

Pretty sure its just an average of a number of readings. 10 snow poles. Take the average. Irons out local variations due to drifting snow.
 
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Red_switch

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jun 5, 2006
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I'm yet to achieve a satisfactory calibration between a mt rose sampler and bulk density measured from a snow pit. In NZ it's so common to end up with vegetation/soil in the bottom of the core, fucks the density measurement right up.
 

Red_switch

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jun 5, 2006
26,079
12,278
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Dunedin, NZ
Pretty sure its just an average of a number of readings. 10 snow poles. Take the average. Irons out local variations due to drifting snow.
10 is probably nowhere near enough to account for spatial variability. But it is a very difficult thing to achieve from in situ measurements.
 

Hemsley

One of Us
Apr 24, 2015
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2 metres? Ambitious! Given the significant clear precipitation likely on Tuesday and Wednesday I am sadly predicting a loss.

Despite what happen earlier in the week I'm still going 2 metres.
200.00

......all depends on what time of the day the reading is done (changing hour by hour,this week).
 
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sbm

One of Us
Aug 2, 2010
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Sydney
huckanddyno.wordpress.com
@Red_switch @BlueHue Bruce Tremper the avalanche forecaster had a story about the lowest density snow he'd ever seen, in Montana, serious cold smoke which must have been about 5% but I don't remember the figures he quoted.

They got several feet of it, sounds epic but it was so low density it offered zero resistance or floatation and your skis were clattering along the icy crust underneath the whole time!
 

Red_switch

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jun 5, 2006
26,079
12,278
1,063
Dunedin, NZ
@Red_switch @BlueHue Bruce Tremper the avalanche forecaster had a story about the lowest density snow he'd ever seen, in Montana, serious cold smoke which must have been about 5% but I don't remember the figures he quoted.

They got several feet of it, sounds epic but it was so low density it offered zero resistance or floatation and your skis were clattering along the icy crust underneath the whole time!
I'd believe that!
 

milesofmars

Hard Yards
Sep 14, 2010
13
3
53
As they are looking at water content my guess would be they did the reading on tuesday so they had a pre-rain estimate, so they knew what they were in for into there dams.

plus if they are hydrologists doing it maybe preoccupied with the rivers today?
 

Taipan

Old n' Crusty
Ski Pass
Jul 5, 2001
32,949
4,658
1,063
NSW Mid North Coast
240cm.

It looked to have come from 179cm back about 10cm = 170cm approx + 80cm reported by Perisher over recent days = 250

So Yeah say 240cm with a bit of natural compaction
 

Miffy

Addicted
Jun 10, 2009
393
245
113
32
Southern Highlands
Hard to call before Monday's system, as much as I'd love to see another 2m season I just don't think it's there.
That 163cm reading was taken on Tuesday 15th, before the deluge :(
So 163cm minus 100+mm, IMO brings it back to about 120/130ish.
Add "80cm" from Blizzard of Oz 2.0, and mayyyybe 5 cents from Monday's system minus four or five days of compaction
=
IMO 196cm :headbang:
 

robbo mcs

One of Us
Ski Pass
Sep 1, 2008
4,550
19,556
363
Kenthurst / Jindabyne
The tail end of the deluge fell as snow at 1850m, and the damage from the rain was not huge.

The big unknown is the effect of windblown and drifting on the spencers reading. There are are some very big areas of snow accumulation around the eyre area of Mt P due to wind effect, the like of which we have not seen for years. I am not going to hazard a guess, but think we are at least 30cm higher than the previous peak at 179cm, so should be over 2m
 
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Adelaidometer

One of Us
Jun 24, 2015
323
333
163
So 163 would've been compacted down quite tight. The 100mm of rain after that would've bounced off, but caused a little melt. I reckon 20cm lost. Perisher said 70-80cm since 1830m asl being more like 80-90cm gain bringing it up to about 220 plus I guess another 5cm Monday. Temperatures remaining below zero until Thurs. Natural compaction without rain, skiers, without above zero temps and without groomers. Maybe a little windblown.

My guess this far out: 223cm
 
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