11th Annual Utah Snow & Avalanche Workshop Open and Motorized Sessions Oct. 27th.
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Observation Date: 
1/16/2018
Observer Name: 
B
Region: 
Salt Lake
Location Name or Route: 
Park City Ridgeline
Weather
Sky: 
Clear
Wind Direction: 
Southwest
Wind Speed: 
Light
Weather Comments: 
Overnight temperatures dipped into the mid teens, and even by 1030 temps had only risen to the low 20's at 9000. Temperatures appeared to be inverted with ridgetop temps reading around 5 to 10 degrees warmer at the same times. Winds were calm until mid afternoon when they became light and out of the WSW. Skies were clear overnight and all through the day on Tuesday.
Snow Characteristics
Snow Surface Conditions: 
Faceted Loose
Wind Crust
Melt-Freeze Crust
Damp
Snow Characteristics Comments: 

Snow surface conditions have been becoming more variable every day. The m/f crusts continue to get thicker on the SSE, S and SSW aspects with slope angles > 25 degrees. Wind affected terrain may be found in the the upper elevation exposed terrain, and especially close to ridgelines. Of note, in areas where there was once a thin (1 to 2 inch) wind crust, these wind slabs are now breaking down significantly, and they are becoming more friendly for riding as they decompose. Widespread SH and NSF development at all elevations and aspects besides the previously mentioned southerlies. And, on many of these southerly aspects facets are developing below the m/f crust, especially at the upper elevations. 

Uphill travel is slippery both on the old existing trails as well as when breaking trail in the surface facets; yet breaking trail is much easier than attempting to climb many of the old trails. 

Of note: W and NW aspects traveled in above 9300 feet were begriming to sand box and become unsupportable in some locations. 

Red Flags
Red Flags: 
Poor Snowpack Structure
Avalanche Problem #1
Type: 
Persistent Weak Layer
Trend: 
Same
Problem #1 Comments: 

See above. All hasty pits indicated the slab is breaking down slightly in many locations, and along with this the basal facets appear to be still very loose and uncohesive in snowpacks with HS less than 1 meter. 

Avalanche Problem #2
Type: 
Loose Dry Snow
Trend: 
Increasing Danger
Problem #2 Comments: 

Surface sluffing was evdient on slopes with angles 35 degrees and greater, and these should be manageable as long as you are not in high consequence terrain. 

Danger appeared to ba a High Consequence Moderate.

Today's Observed Danger Rating: 
Moderate
Tomorrows Estimated Danger Rating: 
Moderate
Snow Profile Coordinates: 
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