11th Annual Utah Snow & Avalanche Workshop Open and Motorized Sessions Oct. 27th.
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Observation Date: 
1/28/2018
Observer Name: 
jg
Location Name or Route: 
Upper Weber Canyon
Weather
Sky: 
Scattered
Wind Direction: 
Northwest
Wind Speed: 
Light
Weather Comments: 
Clouds breaking up by mid day and low cloud ceiling on and off through early afternoon. Noticed the low cloud ceiling yesterday late in the day.
Snow Characteristics
Snow Surface Conditions: 
Powder
Dense Loose
Wind Crust
Rain-Rime Crust
Damp
Snow Characteristics Comments: 

Rime event last night left a thin, zipper crust on many slopes facing the north half of the compass. Wind skins and slabs prevalent as well. Snow damp on solar aspects and at lower elevations. 

Red Flags
Red Flags: 
Recent Avalanches
Cracking
Poor Snowpack Structure
Avalanche Problem #1
Type: 
Wind Drifted Snow
Trend: 
Decreasing Danger
Problem #1 Comments: 

Prevelant in the wind zone but fairly easy to identify, these should start settling out, so decreasing danger in the next couple of days. 

Avalanche Problem #2
Type: 
Persistent Weak Layer
Trend: 
Same
Problem #2 Comments: 

Still worrisome. There are multiple persistent week layers in the pack now. Stability tests are variable, sometimes getting full propagation on ECT's and sometimes not. Spacial variability is another factor as you try to accumulate data. 

Snow Profile
Aspect: 
North
Elevation: 
10600
Slope Angle: 
30
Comments: 

Intentional cornice drop on a north facing, 38° slope released a persistant slab avalanche ≈ 60 ft. wide, 8"-24" deep and ran ≈ 300 ft. Failed on a faceted crust which was probably the old snow surface before the storm on 1/20. Debris piled up 4-6 ft. in the trees. Would not have been a pleasant ride through the trees. 

Avalanches from this last week. These are on steep north facing slopes.

The persistant slab issue continues to be the topic of most concern and is very unpredictable in my opinion. Terrain choices and slope angles are of utmost importance with high consequence probability if you trigger a slide. I'm generally seeing signs of healing with some rounding of the faceted grains and good bridging in places but each new storm is likely to reactivate these persistant weaknesses. We'll have to see what this week brings with warming temps and no real snow forecasted until the weekend. If you're traveling in the wind zone and in steeper terrain on the north half of the compass I would consider the danger considerable. Moderate elsewhewre.

 

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