Utah Avalanche Center in Logan


 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


 December 19, 2006

Hello, this is Toby Weed of the Utah Avalanche Center in Logan with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.  It's Tuesday  December 19th, and it's 7:00 in the evening.  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:

You can find fine shallow powder at high elevations and generally supportable snow in most areas.  Exceptions are at mid and lower elevations where no rain-crust formed late last week.  In these areas, you can still sink deeply into sugary snow, in places all the way to the ground. The strong east winds on Sunday appear to have severely damaged the snow in the southern part of the Logan Forecast Zone, with most exposed slopes in the Logan Peak area pretty well hammered, and upper elevation terrain closer to the Idaho State Line relatively unaffected.  High mountain temperatures on Wednesday will be in the mid twenties, with overnight lows around 15 degrees. There are 42 inches of snow containing 11.2 inches of water at the Tony Grove Snotel site; 105% of normal for the date.

Avalanche Conditions:

Many of last weekend's impressive hard slab avalanches failed on one of a couple different existing persistent weak layers now lurking deep within our snowpack.  Although with time, its getting more unlikely that you would trigger an avalanche, there is certainly still the potential, and anything you did trigger now could be large and dangerous.  With a substantial slab in place and  capping these notorious persistent weak layers on many slopes, I am still rather uneasy in places.  I'm especially nervous in shallow rocky areas and on steep north and east facing slopes above around 8500'.  I might give the steeps and big lines a couple more days to stabilize under our current mundane weather. 

Bottom Line:

There is a MODERATE avalanche danger at upper elevations in the backcountry.  Dangerous triggered persistent slab avalanches are possible on some slopes steeper than about 35 degrees.  Shallow, rocky areas and slopes above around 8500',  facing north and northeast are the most suspect.  There's a LOW danger at lower elevations, on lower angled slopes, and on most southerly facing slopes.

Mountain Weather:

A high pressure system will remain entrenched over the region through Thursday.  A weak and splitting storm should retain enough energy to keep the atmosphere mixed up and bring us a few inches of snowfall Thursday night and Friday.  A high pressure will build for the coming Holiday Weekend.

General Information:

 The Tony Grove Road is not maintained in the winter, and the heavy wet snow in the last couple days probably shut down wheeled access to the area near the lake.  You should be prepared to get stuck in a couple feet of snow if you try to head up this weekend.  Turning around may be difficult.    Rumor has it that Beaver Mountain will be able open up this week.

  The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center-Logan will present the 3rd annual fundraiser on Friday, January 19th at the Bullen Center in downtown Logan.

 I'll update my advisories on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and weekend mornings by about 7:00.   This advisory will expire on Wednesday evening.  I will update it again on Thursday evening.  Logan Area advisories will be accessible through the new statewide toll-free avalanche info line; 1-888-999-4019.

  Please  send backcountry observations to [email protected] or leave us a message at 755-3638, especially if you see or trigger an avalanche in the backcountry.

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.