Wasatch-Cache National Forest  In partnership with:  Utah State Parks and Recreation, Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center-Logan, and Utah State University College of Natural Resources.


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Logan area Avalanche advisory

Tuesday January 17, 2006

Hello, this is Dave Kikkert with your Logan area backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory from the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center .  It's Tuesday January 17th at 8:00 pm.  This advisory is brought to you in part by the Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center in Logan with help from The Trailhead.

Current Conditions:

Heavy snowfall should be impacting our mountains through Thursday.  By Wednesday morning when most of you will read this, up to 8 inches are possible with another 8-10 possible during the day.  Winds should continue to blow from the west and west-southwest in the 25-30 mph range throughout most of Wednesday.  Turning and riding should be excellent on most slopes outside of wind affected terrain; southerly facing slopes have a breakable sun-crust under the new snow.

Avalanche Conditions:

Strong westerly and south-westerly winds accompanied by heavy snowfall tonight and throughout the day tomorrow will result in serious loading of leeward slopes in wind exposed terrain.  The wind-drifted snow will be falling on a snow surface that has faceted and weakened over the last few nights, and as a result drifts may be quite sensitive.  Also keep in mind that heavy snowfall accompanied by wind can load leeward slopes more rapidly and deposit the snow over a larger area than wind blowing snow that's already on the ground.  As a result wind-drifts could be quite deep and extend further off ridgelines than you might expect. 

I would expect most avalanche activity to take place within the new snow only, however it is possible that some heavily loaded areas could step down to a weak layer below a sun-crust that is about a foot down.  While the avalanche danger will be much lower outside of wind effected terrain if we get the nearly two feet of snow forecast by Thursday,  new-snow soft slab avalanches could be possible on some steep slopes outside of wind affected terrain.

Bottom Line:

Wednesday there will be a CONSIDERABLE avalanche danger on slopes steeper than about about 35 degrees with substantial deposits of recently wind-drifted snow.  Be especially wary of steep upper elevation east through north facing slopes.   In wind-sheltered terrain the avalanche danger will be mostly MODERATE.

Mountain Weather:

The Winter Storm Warning is in effect until 5 pm Thursday.  Storm totals of up to two feet are possible by the time snow ends.  Winds will remain in the 25-30 mph range until Wednesday evening when they will shift to the northwest and die down.  Snow showers should linger through Thursday, followed by high pressure Friday.

General Information: 

 For a list of our upcoming classes and awareness talks, go to our Education page . For a list of recent avalanches in  the regional backcountry go to Avalanche List.  Snow nerds, check out the new Snow Profiles page.  You may enjoy our Images Page.

Please send backcountry observations to [email protected] or leave a message at 755-3638, especially if you see or trigger an avalanche in the backcountry. We really want to hear from you, even if you think your observation is unimportant.    The information you provide may save lives...

This advisory will expire Wednesday evening.  Toby will update it on Thursday night.

The information in this advisory is from the U.S. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content.  This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur. 


National Weather Service - Salt Lake City - Snow.