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Utah Avalanche Center in Logan

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 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

Sunday February 25, 2007:

  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.  Itís Sunday February 25th, and itís 7:15 in the morning.  This advisory is brought to you in part by the Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center in Logan with help from Backcountry.com.

Bottom Line:

 This morning there is a CONSIDERABLE avalanche danger, with triggered new snow and wind slab avalanches becoming increasingly probable and deadly persistent slab avalanches possible on many slopes steeper than about 35 degrees in the backcountry.   Heavy snowfall and sustained westerly winds today will likely cause the danger to rise to HIGH on any steep slope with significant new deposits of drifted snow.  Avoid and stay out from under steep slopes in avalanche terrain.

Mountain Weather:

The National Weather Service issued a Snow Advisory until 4:00 am on Monday for the mountains in Northern Utah.  But at this time, today's storm is looking pretty dang potent for the Logan Area Mountains.  Expect sustained westerly winds, averaging 20-30 mph and heavy snowfall today with ~10 inches of accumulation forecast at upper elevations by 5:00 pm.  Several more inches are possible overnight.  There should be a brief window Monday night before the real storm arrives on Tuesday.

Current Conditions:

It will most certainly be a sick powder day, but with a significant new load of snow piling-up on slopes plagued by widespread very weak sugary snow or depth hoar, we should continue to stick to lower angled terrain and steer clear of steep slopes and obvious avalanche paths.  I found fast snow and stable conditions on mid-elevation south and southwest facing slopes yesterday.   I was impressed by the respect given to steep upper elevation slopes in the backcountry, and a good number of popular slopes stayed untracked all day.  As snowfall intensifies in the mountains, it's 14 degrees at Tony Grove.

Avalanche Conditions:

   Triggered slab avalanches are most probable on northwest through east facing slopes above about 8000'.  But today, as substantial new snow piles up on lower elevation slopes with existing very weak basal snow, avalanches will become increasingly possible at lower elevations as well.   Overrunning new snow avalanches or human triggers may initiate dangerous slab avalanches releasing on deeply buried persistent weak layers.  (photos).     Many slopes have now reached a critical balance, (only needing a trigger to avalanche), while far too many others have not quite yet.  Heavy snowfall today could be enough to push another batch of these over the edge, and significant natural avalanches could result.  A few large natural avalanches occurred during the week in the region, (photos), and these indicate the potential for more, especially as the scales are weighted with an additional load of snow.

General Information:

For more information on this week's accidents from the Utah Avalanche Center, go to accidents

Check out photos of this week's avalanches in the Logan Area on our images page.

Go to the Avalanche Encyclopedia if you have any questions about terms I use in the advisory.  I also recommend the recently-released Media Page, which shows the forecast danger for our coverage areas across the state.

Please e-mail me at [email protected] or leave me a message at 755-3638 if you see or trigger avalanches in the backcountry.  The information you provide may save lives...

   This advisory will expire on Monday morning. I will update again on Tuesday evening.

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.