Broken Snow Cornice in the Eastern Sierra Nevada Range

May 05, 2023

JohnKuper_Fallen Cornice

Photographer: John Kupersmith  
Summary Author: John Kupersmith   

Several days of heavy snow and westerly winds caused by a winter storm, one of many to hit California this winter and spring, formed an overhanging cornice on the leeward side of this east facing ridge in the eastern Sierra Nevada. So much snow has accumulated that a number of large blocks have fallen off the cornice. Note that the blocks at center are perhaps 6 ft (2 m) in height. This makes an interesting piece of scenery, but cornices can be dangerous to mountain climbers and cross-country skiers who venture near the edge of a ridge or pass below an overhang. Photo taken on March 3, 2023.

Photo details: Sony RX10ii camera; lens at 54 mm equivalent; ISO 100; 1/1000 second exposure; f/5.6, +0.7 exposure compensation.

Walker, California Coordinates: 38.5149, -119.4768

Related Links:

Layer of Snow atop Reservoir Wall

National Avalanche Center, "Cornice Fall"

John’s Website