Teton Range, WY Report: 52″ Storm Total + A Double Drop in the Teeth of a Mini-Avalanche

Miles Clark | | Conditions ReportConditions Report

Report from January 29, 2023

Note: We saw snowpack instability on this day, including two skier-triggered avalanches. We also saw snowpack instability on 1/30/23, some of it surprising. Please be careful out there and consider taking it down a notch.

Yesterday was the last day of the storm cycle in the Teton Range, Wyoming.

The storm total is now 52″.

“The snowfall received from last Thursday through Saturday is the highest 2-day total on record.” – JHAvalanche.org, 1/31/23

We went for a couple of walks and found some impressively deep snow that made even flat landings pure butter.

On our first run, the sun came out, and we went for a long run with fun, complex features.

I rallied into a zone I love, and as I came over the last roller with some heat into the last pillowy face, I noticed wind-loading and some wind spines, and in my head, I thought, “avalanche.”

Almost immediately, a crack erupted from my feet.

I was already committed to a little drop. As I registered the snow sliding and intensely gaining speed around me, I calculated an exit via another drop to my left that I hoped would get me out of the small (size 0.5) avalanche.

I made the first drop in a cloud of smoke.

I somehow stayed on my feet and did all I could to careen for the second drop on as high a line as possible.

The snow bubbled and boiled under my legs, butt, and hips, wrenching my skis.

I half skied, half rode the frothing snow off the second drop, and landed again.

On the second landing, I was still in a spiteful cloud of snow and couldn’t believe I hadn’t escaped the small avalanche yet.

About ten feet after the second landing, I emerged from the sputtering snow and back into relative normality.

I kept my speed, continued away from the avalanche, looked over my shoulder, and saw that it had gone another direction, dissipated, and had already nearly stopped.

I was pretty shaken up and scared after that.

On our second run, we stayed in mellow terrain and forests and found some fun pillows and cliffs.

The snow was deep.

Thanks for being great partners out there, Owen & Sasha.


image: jhavalanche.com, 1/29/23


image: NOAA, 1/29/23

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4 thoughts on “Teton Range, WY Report: 52″ Storm Total + A Double Drop in the Teeth of a Mini-Avalanche

  1. Why is M Clark always telling us his stories ???
    Is he the founder ??
    I enjoy the page but can you please post others otherwise I’m unsubscribing

    1. Hello Craig, sorry you didn’t like the stories. We do have many other stories on the site by many other great writers :). Yes, I’m the founder. Have a great night

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