As of March 30th, COAC has suspended backcountry avalanche advisories and pro observations until further notice.

On March 23rd, Governor Brown of Oregon issued Stay at Home orders for the public regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. The directives are clear in that “to the maximum extent possible, individuals stay at home or in their place of residence.” On March 27th the Deschutes National Forest issued a closure of all developed recreation sites including trailheads and snoparks. COAC is committed to supporting our community, local emergency services, and agency partners and because of this we felt it important to cease operations as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19.   

This decision was not taken lightly. Aside from the need to maintain congruency with the Governors' orders, there are inherent risks with backcountry activities in alpine environments and it’s important to consider unnecessary exposure to COAC forecasters, first responders, and local medical staff in light of the current situation.

We look forward to getting back into the mountains and providing you all with the tools to recreate safely in the backcountry. Until then we thank you for your continued support and wish all our mountain community the best of health and wellness.

Broken Top

Observation Date/Time:
Thu, Mar 5, 2020 - 5:05 PM
Elliott Reed
Broken Top Area / 8000'
Report Type:
Snow Conditions  
Travel Mode:
Ski or Snowboard  
Sky Conditions:
Few (1/8 - 2/8)
Height of Snow (HS):
205 cm
Wind Direction/Speed:
SW / Strong: 26-38 mph

Written Report:
Today we toured into the crater of Broken Top and towards No Name lake (south, southeast and east slopes).

We observed no avalanche problems and no cracking or whumpfing.

The snow surface was a variety of ice crust to wind affected snow. Due to strong winds, the surface did not soften up as much as we anticipated (even on sunny slopes). Boot penetration was 3cm and ski penetration was 1cm.

Winds were moderate with strong gusts from the Southwest.
We saw small cornices on east facing ridges and no signs of cornice breaks.


This observation is sponsored by: