## Noob snow question

WyomingSummits

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### Re: Noob snow question

I pee in the snow and then stick my tongue in it. How fast the taste of urine reaches my taste buds indicates how dense the snow is.

Wastral

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### Re: Noob snow question

Mattski wrote:Hi, I am just looking at some stuff and I have managed to forget the equation to work out snow density and water content, can some body please help I can not find it anywhere on the internets.

There isn't one. Way too many factors. If what you meant is trying to figure out if an avalanche is likely to occur due to how dense the snow is... If what you wrote was the literally how you meant.

Did you mean how much water can snow hold?(ridiculous as snow IS water)

You don't happen to mean, If I know the snow density I can then figure out the water content do you? In which case its easy. What is the density of water... What is the volume of snow you just measured. What is the definition of density...

Wastral

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### Re: Noob snow question

....

density = lb/volume... multiply by known volume of snow = water weight. Duh. The OP can't be asking something so simpy, then again you don't know something this simple so... who knows.

colinr

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### Re: Noob snow question

nartreb

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### Re: Noob snow question

I think he means, what is the equivalent liquid volume for a given volume of snow?

It varies, of course, since snow comes in all types of flake geometries, is compressible, can absorb liquid water, and changes with time and temperature.

Density = mass/volume. Scoop out a sample of snow of known size, say one liter [about a quart]) and weigh it. Let's say you've got 80 grams of snow. Well, 80 grams of liquid water (at standard temp and pressure, though it hardly matters) would occupy 80 ml [small enough to fit in an approved container for carrying liquids into the cabin of an airplane in the US].

Since volume = width x length x height, you can calculate the equivalent depth of liquid water for any given area, if you know the density of the snow. A ballpark water-equivalent value for fresh, "dry" snow would be about 10% of the snow depth, but in some places snow can be much much drier than that. In an extreme case, a hundred cm of snow could melt down to half a cm of water.