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 March 4, 2006

Hello and good morning, this is Toby Weed of the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your Logan area backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.  It's Saturday  March 4th 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

Current Conditions:

Today we'll find mostly dust-on-crust conditions, with pockets of shallow powder on sheltered north facing upper and mid-elevation slopes.  With last week's warm temperatures, intense high angle sunshine, and the strong southerly winds, powder conditions are suffering on most slopes in the backcountry.  But, you'll find fairly easy trail-breaking and "ride-anywhere" conditions.  The warmth and rain from earlier in the week built a supportable crust, even at upper elevations, and on some scoured slopes, uncontrolled slides or falls may present more danger than avalanches.   There are a few inches of newer, heavy snow on top of Tuesday's crust, which in most cases is now either sun-crusted or wind-hammered.  A couple inches of fresh snow fell overnight, which will help matters a little, but we'll have to wait for a few more days for more snow and a healthy return to winter.  Temperatures are generally under 20 and should stay pretty cold in the mountains today. As the remnants of this storm move off to the northeast, clouds will begin break up, and we should see some sunshine this afternoon.

  Snow and Avalanche Conditions:

You might be able to trigger a wind slab or two on some very steep upper elevation slopes today, but avalanches are generally unlikely in the region. Despite the rather high southerly winds at upper elevations yesterday, not too much drifting actually occurred lacking much transportable snow.  The few solid drifts I found appeared to be solidly welded in place, but a few may have built up on a weak layer of sugary or faceted snow.  Some of these isolated hard slabs on very steep slopes could be mouse-traps, waiting for you to get well out on them before suddenly releasing. You might find such traps above about 8500' on northwest, north, northeast, or east facing slopes. The southerly winds at the Campbell Scientific weather station on top of Logan Peak diminished from averages in the thirties yesterday to the mid-teens this morning.  And with only two or three inches of new snow overnight, any new wind-drifts will probably be fairly small and manageable.  Keep in mind that potential shallow wind-slabs and sluffs could pick up speed on slick underlying crusts.

Below freezing temperatures will keep a lid on any seasonal wet avalanche activity today.

Bottom Line:

There's a LOW danger, and avalanches are unlikely on the majority of steep slopes in the backcountry.   However, some wind slab avalanches are possible, and there's a MODERATE danger on very steep, wind-drifted slopes at upper elevations.

Mountain Weather:

We could pick up another inch or two in the mountains this morning, but the storm will move off to the north and east during the day.  Clouds will succumb to sunny skies this afternoon.  Sunday will be fair and we'll see a brief return to spring before winter sets in again next week. Southeast winds will  be moderately strong in the mountains tomorrow, with average ridge-top wind speeds forecast at 25 mph.  The wind will shift around from the south and intensify Sunday night ahead of the first of next week's storms, scheduled for Monday.

General Information: 

If you're confused by some of our avalanche terms check out the cool new Avalanche Encyclopedia

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...

 I will update this advisory 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.