Snowpack Stability Scales


Stuff Block Test Shovel Shear Test
0 cm drop Unstable While inserting Unstable
10cm drop Unstable Easy shear Unstable
20 cm drop Unstable

30 cm drop Moderate instability Medium shear Moderate instability
40 cm drop Moderate instability

50 cm + Stable Hard shear Stable

Rutschblock

US Ratings Canadian Ratings
1 = Fails during excavation 1 = Fails during excavation
2 = Fails while approaching or stepping 2 = Fails while approaching or stepping
3 = Fails when weighted 3 = Fails when weighted
4 = Fails with one jump 4 = Fails with one jump
5 = Fails with two jumps 5 = Fails with two jumps
6 = Fails with 4-5 jumps 6 = Fails with repeated jumps
7 = Doesn't fail

Hazard Hazard
1, 2, 3, or 4 = Poor stability 5 or earlier = Caution
5 = Moderate instability 6 = OK
6 and 7 = Relative to good stability