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Observation: Salt Lake

Observation Date
4/17/2022
Observer Name
B
Region
Salt Lake
Location Name or Route
Brighton Permiter
Weather
Sky
Overcast
Wind Direction
Northwest
Wind Speed
Moderate
Weather Comments
OVC skies gave way to CRL by afternoon. Moderate NW Winds even down from the highest ridge lines with Moderate Wind Blown observed throughout the morning hours. Tour ended by 1200 hours. Temperatures hovered around freezing at 8000 and in the upper 20's at higher elevations.
Snow Characteristics
New Snow Depth
5"
New Snow Density
High
Snow Surface Conditions
Powder
Wind Crust
Damp
Snow Characteristics Comments
4 to 5 inches of dense new snow began around 1600 hours on Saturday with the bulk of the storm accumulating by 1900. New snow consisted of graupel at the initial stages and then rimed PP throughout the event. Good/typical Spring dense Powder riding was found on many slopes and this dense new snow kept you off the old snow surface even on steeper descents. Areas of scoured snow surfaces on exposed upper elevation terrain and 4 Finger to 1 Finger hard Wind Slabs on many features. By 1030 the solar began to impact the new snow surfaces on East and SE aspects. Ended tour early today by noon and would have expected all aspects besides steep North to have gotten damp and will be crusted on Monday.
Red Flags
Red Flags
Wind Loading
Cracking
Poor Snowpack Structure
Red Flags Comments
Moderate Wind Blown today as well as the Wind Blown during the event contributed to reactive Wind Slabs in steep terrain. Cracking was observed in the early morning hours with a small/shallow pocket of Wind Slab easily triggered upon exiting on a steep Northerly facing Test Slope. Hand Shears were easily identifying this potential problem and it was found on a number of slopes and aspects. Poor Snowpack Structure was limited to the reactive weak layer of Grauple that fell initially in the event with the dense snow that followed creating a 1 Finger minus Wind Slab. Upper Elevation Terrain likely had more of an issue on terrain features that had Isolated Pockets of Wind Slab.
Avalanche Problem #1
Problem
Wind Drifted Snow
Trend
Decreasing Danger
Problem #1 Comments
See above, and this issue may linger on Monday in upper elevation Steep Northerly facing terrain with the Graupel weak layer continuing to be an issue. The warm temperatures and solar should help this problem to decrease significantly over the next 36 hours.
Avalanche Problem #2
Problem
Cornice
Trend
Increasing Danger
Problem #2 Comments
Large Cornices were growing over the past weeks event as well as during yesterdays event. Rapid Warming over the next few days may continue to keep this problem a concern, and Natural Releases may be possible.
The same Rapid (and excessive) Warming most likely contributed to Wet Loose Activity during the afternoon hours. And the, old/slick/pre-storm snow surface will serve as an excellent bed surface. This Wet Loose Problem may become an issue over the next few days even on the Polar aspects as the daytime highs hit unseasonably warm temperatures.
Today's Observed Danger Rating
Moderate
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating
Moderate