Forecast for the Uintas Area Mountains

Craig Gordon
Issued by Craig Gordon for
Saturday, January 21, 2023
About as straight-forward as it gets-
MODERATE avalanche danger is found on steep, upper elevation leeward slopes, especially in the wind zone at and above treeline. Fresh wind drifts reactive to our additional weight are POSSIBLE.
Generally LOW avalanche danger is found on all mid and lower elevation slopes.

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Special Announcements
Are you snowpack curious... wondering how the Persistent Weak Layer went from Zero to Hero? Well then, you came to the right place! Please join me 6:00 Monday, January 23rd in Park City at the Kimball Junction Library for a State of the Snowpack prezo. It's gonna be informative, educational, and quite possibly entertaining :)
Weather and Snow
Nowcast- A shot of cold air slid through the region overnight, delivering a trace of snow and temperatures hovering right around zero. Toss in some northwest winds blowing 15-25 mph and you've got windchill registering right around -15 degrees... ouch. But as skies begin to clear you'll forget about the diesel gelling, toe numbing cold... yup the riding is amazing, especially in mid elevation, wind sheltered terrain.
Forecast- High pressure briefly visits northern Utah, delivering partly cloudy skies, as northwest winds blow 15-25 mph along the high peaks. Temperatures are gonna be cold with highs barely clawing their way into the low 20's while overnight lows crater into negative territory.
Futurecast- Another weak storm clips the northern half of the state and we can expect increasing clouds and buzz-killing northerly winds ramping into the 50's overnight and into Sunday. We might be able to squeeze 2"-4" of snow out of this mostly dry system, but then we're left with very cold temperatures barely reaching into the teens for Monday.

Colossal water numbers and Herculean snowpack depths are helping the pack turn the corner. This strongly aligns with reasoning to pull the plug on our problem child, the Persistent Weak Layer, which has plagued us since late November... whew!
Also, I'm super stoked to see Trevor Katz great ob and insight from the south half of the range near Tut Creek. Nice work man... thanks for the beta!
Huge thanks for all the great obs streaming in from the eastern front. Detailed trip reports and recent obs are found HERE.
Recent Avalanches
Snow-Pro, mentor to countless avalanche professionals, all around amazing person, and always keen to rally... Bill Nalli, has a keen eye for all things avalanche and spotted a rather significant, week old slide in Upper Moffit Basin. Deets are found HERE.
Other than a shallow wind drift or two, no other significant avy activity to report. But a slew of Uinta avy obs are found HERE.
Avalanche Problem #1
Wind Drifted Snow
In the wind zone... a shallow wind drift on a steep leeward slope in the image above is overshadowed by a huge cornice. Both easy to avoid because... if the thunder don't get you then the lightning will.
There's no shortage of snow available to blow around and recent winds have no problem whipping up a fresh round of shallow drifts sensitive to our additional weight. Found on upper elevation leeward slopes all over the compass, they're manageable in size and manageable by avoidance... lose a little elevation, you lose the wind and you lose the problem.

Additional Information
Come as you are or grab your black tie... in either case I'd like to visit with you Monday night :)
Weather stations-
And... rime events have severely crippled the Uinta weather station network. I'm working to get it back up and running, but a few stations are found HERE (click weather stations, and then on the Western Uinta tab)
Your observations are important, so please let me know what you're seeing... click HERE and contribute to this amazing community-based program
General Announcements
Issued at 03:23 on Saturday January 21st, this forecast expires 24 hours after the date and time posted, but will be updated by 07:00 Sunday January 22nd, 2023.
Before it gets too crazy, now is the time to book an avalanche awareness presentation for your group, club, or posse. You can reach Craig directly at 801-231-2170 or [email protected].

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.