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Forecast for the Provo Area Mountains

Drew Hardesty
Issued by Drew Hardesty for
Friday, April 8, 2022
A MODERATE danger exists in the Provo mountains. You can trigger wet loose avalanches today as the snow becomes damp and unstable. In isolated areas, may also be able to trigger soft slab avalanches on steep north facing terrain in the upper elevations.
Remember that risk is inherent in mountain travel and even a small avalanche can lead to a bad outcome in radical terrain.
Learn how to read the forecast here
Weather and Snow
Skies are clear.
Mountain temperatures are in the mid-to upper-30s.
Winds are light from the north.
For today, we'll have sunny skies with high cirrus filtering through overhead by the afternoon. Winds will start to back to the southwest and blow 15mph with gusts to 20. Temperatures will be sweltering by the afternoon and early evening with base temps pushing into the upper 50s as alpine temps reach the mid-40s.
Corn skiing and riding is excellent, although the window will close earlier today than yesterday. One can still find a few inches of high density "powder" on the high northerlies.

A largely dry cold front pushes through in the wee hours overnight, dropping mountain temperatures back into the single digits this weekend. We'll see 25-30mph winds from the southwest tonight into tomorrow before veering to the northwest Saturday night. Ridgetop winds continue to blow 20-25mph on Sunday. The weather models continue to point towards a return to winter next week.
Recent Avalanches

Find all observations HERE.
Avalanche Problem #1
Wet Snow
All aspects but true north will become damp to wet and unstable with direct sun and scorching temperatures. Wet loose avalanches will be easy to trigger. They will be shallow and slow moving, but problematic in confined terrain. Choose timing and terran carefully. Rollerballs, pinwheels, natural sluffs, and punchy snow are signs to head to a cooler aspect or back to the car. (To be sure, many solar aspects have burned off to dirt, but many have not.)
  • Cornice fall is always possible this time of year.
Avalanche Problem #2
Wind Drifted Snow
Pockets of wind slab exist in isolated terrain.
On upper elevation northerly slopes, any avalanche may potentially step down to a weak layer of facets (PWL) 1-2' deep, particularly in the southern part of the Provo mountains. These facets are remnant from the dry spell in Jan and February and are slowly stabilizing. There is a great deal of uncertainty with this layering, but this structure has been active further south on the Manti-Skyline Plateau, as recently as last Saturday. It is worth pulling your shovel out and looking at the snow structure yourself. Bo Torrey found unstable test results in Big Springs last weekend while my test results hinted at a more stabilizing snowpack on Wednesday. Our info can be found HERE>
General Announcements
Who's up for some free avalanche training? Get a refresher, become better prepared for an upcoming avalanche class, or just boost your skills. Go to https://learn.kbyg.org/ and scroll down to Step 2 for a series of interactive online avalanche courses produced by the UAC.
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.