Avalanche Advisory
Advisory: Uintas Area Mountains Issued by Craig Gordon for Wednesday - December 17, 2014 - 5:56am
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In the wind zone at and above treeline a MODERATE avalanche danger exists and human triggered avalanches are possible on steep slopes facing the north half of the compass. Remember- triggering even a small slide will expose stumps and rocks, instantly ruing your day and quite possibly your season.

All other terrain offers a LOW avalanche danger.

special announcement

Huge thanks to Weller Recreation and Ski-Doo for partnering with The Avalanche Center and providing a loaner sled for the 2014-15 season. This partnership allows us to see more terrain, issue more accurate forecasts, and ultimately save more lives.

We just released an exciting, new avy safety video designed specifically for snowmobilers - Knowledge is Powder. https://vimeo.com/113677686

Our Uinta weather station network is up and running. Current winds, snowfall, and temperatures can be found here.

NEW THIS YEAR: You can now receive advisories by email for each region in the state. Go here for details.

current conditions

Skies are mostly cloudy, temperatures in the mid to upper teens, and southwest winds continue to blow 25-35 mph along the high peaks. The weekend storm produced 8" of light density snow, and while the Uinta's are still rather thin, good riding and turning conditions are found, especially on low angle meadows and rock free slopes.

recent activity

JG noticed this natural slide on the steep, rocky, east face of Mount Watson.

Avalanche Problem 1
type aspect/elevation characteristics
over the next 24 hours

There's plenty of light density snow to blow around and yesterday's strong south and southwesterly winds formed shallow soft slabs in steep, upper elevation, leeward terrain. Winds continued through the night and today's drifts may break a bit wider and deeper than you might expect. In addition, they'll be packing more of a punch. While not widespread, and easy to detect by their fat, rounded appearance, you'll want to avoid any steep slope with recent deposits of wind drifted snow. Lose a little elevation, get out of the wind zone, and the avalanche danger decreases dramatically.

This guy kills it with his backcountry observations... here's a great snowpit JG submitted from his travels around Mt. Watson yesterday, clearly illustrating the current snowpack setup. More on his trip can be found here.


Mostly cloudy skies are on tap today and tomorrow as a couple of weak disturbances slide through the region today and again on Thursday. Southwest winds should begin to relax a bit and die off into the 15-25 mph range as the day wares on. Temperatures climb into the upper 20's and dip into the teens overnight. High pressure builds for Friday and then another weak system is slated for Sunday. A bigger storm could be on tap around Christmas.

general announcements

Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting snow and avalanche conditions.   You can call me directly at 801-231-2170, email craig@utahavalanchecenter.org, or email by clicking HERE

This is a great time of year to schedule a free avalanche awareness presentation for your group or club. You can contact me at 801-231-2170 or email craig@utahavalanchecenter.org

Donate to your favorite non-profit –The Utah Avalanche Center. The UAC depends on contributions from users like you to support our work.

Benefit the Utah Avalanche Center when you buy or sell on ebay - set the Utah Avalanche Center as a favorite non-profit in your ebay account here and click on ebay gives when you buy or sell.  You can choose to have your seller fees donated to the UAC, which doesn't cost you a penny.

Utah Avalanche Center mobile app - Get your advisory on your iPhone along with great navigation and rescue tools.

The information in this advisory is from the US Forest Service which is solely responsible for its content. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur.

I will update this advisory by 7:00 AM Saturday Dec. 20, 2014.