Forecast for the Ogden Area Mountains

Nikki Champion
Issued by Nikki Champion on
Sunday morning, February 11, 2024
Today, the avalanche danger is MODERATE. Deadly slab avalanches may fail in a persistent weak layer and be up to 6' deep on upper and mid-elevation slopes facing west through north and southeast. On all other slopes, the main concern is soft slabs of storm snow or wind-drifted snow 2-3' deep. In areas without a cohesive slab, you may trigger long-running loose snow sluffs in steep terrain.
With the sun, the solar aspects may experience pinwheels, roller balls, and small sluffs as the cold snow heats up.
With clearing skies, backcountry riders will continue to encounter elevated avalanche conditions. Evaluate snow and terrain carefully. Excellent riding conditions exist on lower-angled slopes in all directions.
Learn how to read the forecast here
Special Announcements
There is a NEW beacon training park in Park City near the Park City Day School. We encourage you to check it out and practice your avalanche rescue skills.
Weather and Snow
This morning, skies are clear and temperatures range in the single digits F. Winds are primarily northwesterly and are light, with a few overnight gusts near 30 mph. Since yesterday morning, the mountains picked up an additional trace amount of snowfall.
Skiing and riding conditions are excellent at all elevations across the range.
Today, high pressure will build over the area, bringing about dry and stable conditions accompanied by light winds. Skies will remain clear and temperatures will climb into the mid to upper 20s F and northerly winds remaining light, gusting to 25 mph along the highest ridgetops.
There might be some unsettled weather later this week, but it's more likely to snow again by next Monday.
Recent Avalanches
The only avalanche activity reported from the backcountry was on Thursday was along the North Ogden divide, where cornice drops produced long-running sluffs in the storm snow. See the photo below from Daniel Turner and read their full observation here.
Control work from resorts continues to trigger small avalanches within the storm snow.

South of Ogden, in the Salt Lake Area mountains, the primary red flags were massive avalanches failing into the buried Persistent Weak Layer, with two notable avalanches occurring at the following locations:
  • Main Gobblers - Millcreek Canyon - 9800' - Northwest Aspect - Hard slab failing on facets 5' deep - 400' wide - running approx 1000'
  • Cardiac Ridge - Cardiff Fork - 10,800' - East Aspect - Hard slab failing on facets 3.5-4' deep - approx 350' wide.
These are worth paying attention too as the PWL becomes less of a problem in the Ogden area mountains.

Be sure to make reading reported avalanches and observations part of your backcountry planning.
Avalanche Problem #1
Persistent Weak Layer
Several feet of snow, containing over 6 inches of water, should eventually help heal our persistent weak layer (PWL) problem. However, for now, it has only complicates the situation. What was once a 1-2' slab in early February has now transformed into a 3-6' slab throughout the range, potentially even deeper in wind-drifted areas.
The likelihood of triggering an avalanche on the PWL is very low in the Ogden area, and I would almost describe the PWL as dormant. However, with the addition of water weight over the past few days, we aren't ready to put the layer completely to bed yet.
The weak layer is just as strong as it was prior to the storm, but now the slab over the top is significantly thicker. The bottom line is that there's more weight, resulting in larger avalanches. It's imperative to give this weak layer time.
While the new snow instabilities should be settling, there may still be some sensitive soft slabs across all aspects and elevations in the range. Any avalanche initially triggered in the new snow could potentially step down deeper in areas where the persistent weak layer (PWL) is known to exist.
General Announcements
This information does not apply to developed ski areas or highways where avalanche control is normally done. This forecast is from the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content. This forecast describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur.