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


Saturday February 11, 2006

Hello, this is Toby Weed of the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your Logan area backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.  It's Saturday February 11th at 7:00 am.  This advisory is brought to you in part by the Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center in Logan with help from Backcountry Access Inc.

Current Conditions:

 Thankfully, it will start to warm up under sunny skies today.  A north wind is still pumping dry arctic air into the region.   It's darn cold this morning, with single digit readings currently at most regional mountain weather stations.  The Bug Lake Snotel reports -3 degrees, and it's a chilly 2 above at both Franklin Basin and Monte Cristo.  The Campbell Scientific weather station on the summit of Logan Peak is recording winds from the north averaging 15 to 20 mph.

Today you'll find a wide variety of snow conditions in the backcountry.  The intense sunshine and warmth last week laid down crusts on all slopes facing the southern half of the compass.  And, strong winds from the north and west hammered the soft snow on exposed shady slopes.  You've been busy in the backcountry in the past week, and there're tracks all over most of the popular slopes in the region.  It might be a good day to explore new terrain or head for that far-away secret  powder stash.

Avalanche Conditions:

Un-controlled slides or falls on steep crusty slopes may pose more danger today than avalanches in some areas. No one reported any new avalanches in the region since last weekend and avalanches are unlikely today.  But, you could find isolated exceptions and possibly trigger avalanches on some very steep slopes, (steeper than about 40 degrees).  I'd still give the solid ridge-top drifts a bit of space.  You should poke around a bit to see if you're about to cross a thick drift or a thin wind-crust.  Temperatures are forecast to rise fairly drastically today and though most sunny slopes are solidly crusted over this morning, some may soften to the point where you might be able to trigger wet avalanches on some slopes.  I've been finding isolated shallow areas with weak sugary snow, and there's a small chance that you could trigger a pocket-sized old-snow avalanche.  Watch out for or tread lightly on very steep roll-overs on shallow or rocky slopes.

Although today might be a good one to try some of the bigger mountain lines in the area, you should continue to follow basic safety protocols.

Bottom Line:

Avalanches are unlikely and the danger is LOW on most slopes in the backcountry.  You still might find exceptions and possibly trigger isolated avalanches on a few very steep, wind-drifted, sun-warmed, or shallow slopes.

Mountain Weather:

  The high pressure ridge rebuilds over the region this weekend, and mountains temperatures will rise back up into the mild category.  The winds will swing around from the southeast during the day today, and will be strongest in the canyons or gaps.  We're still on track for a major change in the weather pattern mid-week.  I'm thinking snowfall in the mountains by around Wednesday.

General Information: 

We will offer a free avalanche awareness talk open to the public at the Directive on Wednesday evening, February 15th at 7:00.

For a list of recent avalanches in  the regional backcountry go to Avalanche List.  Snow nerds, check out the new Snow Profiles page.  Check out our Images Page for pictures of recent local avalanches.

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...

  Dave Kikkert will update this advisory on Sunday morning by about 7:00.

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.