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.


       The Utah Avalanche Center Home page is: http://www.avalanche.org/~uac/

             (click on) Utah Avalanche Center in Logan for our home page           


Logan area Avalanche Advisory

7:30, Friday March 7, 2008

Hello and good morning, this is Toby Weed of the Utah Avalanche Center with your Logan Area backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.  It’s Friday March 7th, at 7:30 in the morning.  This advisory is brought to you in part by the Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center in Logan with help from Avalanchetools.com.

Current Conditions:   Should be a pleasant, mostly sunny, and warmer day in the backcountry.  You’ll be treated to a wide variety of snow conditions, ranging from softening supportable sun-crusts on lower elevation sunny slopes to re-crystallized powder-like snow in shady mid and upper elevation areas.   The Central Bear River Range picked up a respectable shot of fresh snow on Tuesday, and we’ve been finding pretty good shallow powder riding and turning conditions since then.  Snow nerds may be interested in the fact that I’ve noticed a few areas where a funky radiation crust developed a couple inches below the frosty snow surface.  This morning the CSI Logan Peak weather station reports a 20 mph north wind and 14 degrees. 

  Avalanche Conditions:  

 There have been no recent avalanches reported in the Logan Area since Tuesday’s small storm when a few small soft natural wind slabs released at upper elevations.  I noticed a couple small loose wet dribblers in lower Logan Canyon yesterday afternoon.

There are a few very steep slopes in the region where you might trigger freshly formed or older wind slab avalanches.  The danger is limited to isolated upper elevation slopes and/or slopes exposed to significant wind drifting.  Watch for and avoid obvious drifts or wind slabs on very steep slopes.  Hard wind slabs sometimes wait until you get well out on them before releasing.  Clues include chalky looking or hollow sounding stiff snow and shooting cracks.  Some of the huge cornices in the region and a few existing hard slabs may also become a bit more sensitive with today’s warming.

Although the activity will be limited by sun crusts, solar warming will probably saturate the fresh surface snow on sunny sheltered slopes causing a danger of wet point-release type avalanches.  Thin clouds moving into the region this afternoon could trap atmospheric heat exacerbating the problem.  If you encounter saturated or sloppy snow on a steep slope you should move on to a shadier and cooler area or head home.

Bottom Line:  There’s a LOW danger and avalanches are generally unlikely this morning on most steep slopes in the backcountry.  There are exceptions, and you might find isolated pockets with a MODERATE danger in exposed upper elevation terrain on very steep slopes where you might trigger wind slab avalanches.  Also, solar warming could cause a MODERATE danger of wet avalanches on sheltered sunny slopes with saturated snow.  Use good snow assessment and safe travel techniques to minimize your risks in the backcountry today.

 Mountain Weather: A high pressure system will control the weather today, and a splitting storm will bring a threat of some snow to the region tomorrow.  It’ll be noticeably warmer in the mountains today, with high clouds moving in this afternoon.  The southern portion of a weakening Pacific storm will probably drop a few inches of snow on the Bear River Range on its way to points south tomorrow.  Another weak system is expected mid-week. 

General Announcements: 

The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center in Logan is presenting an Avalanche Fundamentals, Level 1 Class (Certification), starting March 14, with field sessions on the 15th, and 22nd.  Please register in advance with the Friends via e-mail or for more information contact [email protected].

 Check out the images page for photos of some of this season’s avalanches.

Go to the Avalanche Encyclopedia if you have any questions about terms I use in the advisory.

I'm very interested to know what you're seeing out there.  Please e-mail observations to me at [email protected] or leave me a message at 755-3638, especially if you see or trigger an avalanche in the backcountry. We keep all observations confidential.

This advisory will expire in 24 hours from the posting time.

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.