The elevation at which falling snow transitions to rain, also called the rain/snow line.

Credit: Angela Crampton

At elevations above the snow level, precipitation falls as snow, and below it, it falls as rain. A mix of snow and rain are common within a few hundred feet of the snow level. The snow level is always lower in elevation than the freezing level, meaning that snow transitions to rain at temperatures slightly warmer than freezing. Because both rain and snow have important implications for avalanche conditions and subsequent snowpack characteristics, pay attention to the snow level during storms. 

The snow level often fluctuates as a storm evolves. A rising snow level (shown in the first half of this storm) means that rain will fall at higher elevations as the storm progresses. Credit: Fox 12 Weather

Precipitation falls as snow a few hundred feet below the freezing level before transitioning to rain. Credit: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration