Avalanche Advisory
Advisory: Logan Area Mountains Issued by Toby Weed for Saturday - February 24, 2018 - 6:14am
bottom line

You'll find excellent powder conditions in the backcountry, but heightened avalanche conditions exist on drifted upper and mid elevation slopes. Human triggered persistent slab and wind slab avalanches are possible. Drifting from increasing southwest winds will cause the danger to rise and become more widespread today and tonight.

  • Evaluate snow and terrain carefully, and make conservative decisions.
  • Avoid and stay out from under steep drifted slopes.




special announcement

We have discount lift tickets for Alta, Snowbird, Brighton, Solitude, Snowbasin,and Beaver Mountain. Details and order information here. All proceeds from your purchase go towards paying for avalanche forecasting and education.

current conditions

Recent cold temperatures preserved the nice powder, and a few more inches of very light fresh snow fell yesterday. You'll find excellent powder riding and skiing in the backcountry, but human-triggered avalanches are possible. Heightened avalanche conditions exist on drifted upper and mid elevation slopes, and increasing southwest wind today will cause the danger to rise and become more widespread.

  • The Tony Grove Snotel at 8400' reports two or three inches of new snow yesterday, containing 0.2" SWE ‚Äč(or Snow Water Equivalent). It's 4°F and there is 71 inches of total snow, with 84% of normal SWE.
  • It's 6°F at the UDOT Hwy 89 Logan Summit sheds, and northwesterly winds increased a bit overnight and are currently blowing 10 to 15 mph, with gusts approaching 30 mph.
recent activity
  • A party of riders remote triggered a 300' wide avalanche from the ridge on an east facing slope at around 9000' in elevation near Gibson Basin on Monday, 2/19. Nobody got caught, and the avalanche stepped down into old (faceted) layers.


A very wide natural avalanche occurred in south Wood Camp late in the storm on 2/18 or 2/19.

Avalanche Problem 1
type aspect/elevation characteristics
LIKELIHOOD
LIKELY
UNLIKELY
SIZE
LARGE
SMALL
TREND
INCREASING DANGER
SAME
DECREASING DANGER
over the next 24 hours
description

Areas with heightened persistent slab avalanche conditions exist at upper and mid elevations, mainly in drifted terrain. Drifting from increasing westerly wind will cause the danger to rise further.

  • Wind slabs formed and are building on slopes with poor snow structure, and dangerous avalanches failing on persistent weak layers are possible.
  • Continue to avoid steep rocky slopes with shallow snow cover and poor snow structure.
  • Avalanches could be remote triggered, from a distance or below.
  • Cracking and collapsing or whumpfing are red flags indicating unstable snow.
Avalanche Problem 2
type aspect/elevation characteristics
LIKELIHOOD
LIKELY
UNLIKELY
SIZE
LARGE
SMALL
TREND
INCREASING DANGER
SAME
DECREASING DANGER
over the next 24 hours
description

The fresh powder is so light it won't take much wind to drift it in to avalanche starting zones. Sensitive human triggered wind slab avalanches are possible in drifted terrain. Increasing southwesterly wind will cause the danger of wind slab avalanches to increase and become more widespread during the day today.

  • Watch for and avoid drifted snow in and around terrain features like cliff bands, gullies, scoops, and sub-ridges.
  • Wind slabs could rapidly form with moderate winds on the lee side of major ridges and downwind of open fetch areas.
  • Drifts are forming on slopes with poor snow structure, and some wind slab avalanches could step down to buried weak faceted layers.
  • Avoid ridge-top cornices, which often break further back than expected and can trigger avalanches on drifted slopes below.
weather

The active pattern across the western states will continue into the first half of next week. The next storm system will cross the area tonight through early Sunday. A new storm system will track south in California and have minimal impact on Utah midweek.

  • Today: Snow. High near 14. Wind chill values as low as -17. Breezy, with a southwest wind 16 to 22 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible.
  • Tonight: Snow. Low around 4. Wind chill values as low as -18. Blustery, with a west northwest wind 21 to 24 mph, with gusts as high as 38 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 3 to 5 inches possible.
  • Sunday: Snow likely, mainly before 11am. Cloudy, with a high near 17. Wind chill values as low as -18. Breezy, with a west wind 20 to 26 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible.
general announcements

Episode 5 of the UAC podcast To Hell in a Heartbeat - A Conversation With Tom Diegel and Matt Clevenger About the 12.26.08 Full Burial on Little Water is live. This podcast talks with Matt and Tom about their experience and the massive success of the To Hell in a Heartbeat video which has been viewed almost 3M times. Check it out on ITunes, Stitcher, the UAC blog, or wherever you get your podcasts.

The UAC Marketplace is online. The holiday auction is closed, but our online marketplace still has deals on skis, packs, airbag packs, beacons, snowshoes, soft goods and much more.

The UAC has new support programs with Outdoor Research and Darn Tough. Support the UAC through your daily shopping. When you shop at Smith's, or online at Outdoor Research, REI, Backcountry.com, Darn Tough, Patagonia, NRS, Amazon, eBay a portion of your purchase will be donated to the FUAC. See our Donate Page for more details on how you can support the UAC when you shop.

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 Check it out on ITunes, Stitcher, the UAC blog, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Now is a great time to practice companion rescue techniques with your backcountry partners. Here's our rescue practice video.

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Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please help us out by submitting snow and avalanche observations. You can also call us at 801-524-5304, email by clicking HERE, or include #utavy in your Instagram.

This advisory is from the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur.