Avalanche Advisory
Advisory: Logan Area Mountains Issued by Toby Weed for Wednesday - January 22, 2014 - 7:06am
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Heightened avalanche conditions exist, and the overall danger in the backcountry is Level 2 or MODERATE. You could trigger dangerous and destructive deep slab avalanches on steep slopes with poor snow structure, where a thicker or more cohesive slab now sits on top of very weak sugary or faceted snow. Areas or pockets with a Level 3 or CONSIDERABLE danger exist, and triggered deep slab avalanches may remain probable on some very steep drifted upper elevation north, northeast, and east facing slopes that have not already avalanched. Shallower areas on a slab are likely trigger points. In some areas, you still might trigger dangerous avalanches remotely, meaning from a distance or below. Careful snowpack evaluation, cautious route-finding, and conservative decision making will be essential for safe travel in the backcountry.

special announcement
  • The UAC's latest video of our 1-14-2014 visit to the Fairgrounds Avalanche is on YouTube. Watch it .....HERE***

The Utah Avalanche Center in Logan is offering two upcoming avalanche awareness classes. On January 23 and 25, we are offering an advanced awareness class for those wanting to refresh their skills or learn more about traveling safely in avalanche terrain. And on February 15, the center is teaming up with the ZBROS to offer a combined riding skills and essential avalanche skills field day for snowmobilers. Come join us to learn more about how to stay safe in the backcountry. More information and registration is available on our website or by calling 435-757-2794. Visit our list of upcoming classes..........HERE

current conditions

The Tony Grove Snotel at 8400' reports 28 degrees and 48 inches of total snow containing 77% of average water content for the date. It's 23 degrees at the 9700' Logan Peak weather station, and I'm reading northwest winds averaging a bit less than 20 mph overnight. Dangerous avalanche conditions remain on some slopes in the backcountry, especially at upper elevations. Despite widespread poor snow structure, stability gradually increases with time, and it is growing ever more unlikely that you could trigger a deep slab avalanche. Problem is, if you do trigger one, it'll be large, destructive, and potentially deadly.. You can find pretty good settled powder conditions in sheltered terrain, but sunny slopes are a bit crusty and lots of upper elevation slopes are either a little wind-jacked or avalanched to the ground and basal layers during a very active natural avalanche cycle over a week ago now. I've been finding pretty good conditions near the flanks of some of the large avalanches or in drifted-in areas on the bed surfaces.

recent activity

No new avalanches were reported locally since last Friday, 1-17-2014, when a Utah rider triggered a large deep slab avalanche above Bloomington Lake in southeast Idaho. He was caught and carried, but was able to accelerate out of and escape the avalanche as it hit the lake with huge pile of debris and enough force to break the ice around the shores of the lake. Report....... HERE

This large triggered avalanche north of the Idaho state line almost got another lucky Utah rider on Friday. The rider escaped on his sled as the avalanche hit Bloomington Lake with enough force to break the ice around the rim of the lake! (Buttars)

  • On 1-11-2014, a Utah rider triggered and was caught, carried and fully buried and injured by a very large deep slab avalanche north of the Idaho State Line. More info. I visited the site during daylight hours yesterday and will update the accident report today... HERE
  • On 1-13-2014, a 19-year-old rider was caught and completely buried by a HUGE avalanche in the "Fairgrounds" on the east side of Logan Peak. Remarkable story and accident report...... HERE
  • Evidence of a widespread natural deep slab cycle was well observed during fair weather in the last week. See your observations and photos HERE

Avalanche Problem 1
type aspect/elevation characteristics
over the next 24 hours

The danger of very dangerous deep slab avalanches is gradually decreasing, but you still could trigger potentially huge and destructive avalanches, especially on steep previously drifted slopes at upper elevations that haven't yet avalanched. Most of the observed avalanches from last week's natural cycle were on north through east facing slopes, but an exception on a northwest facing slope was observed in upper High Creek Canyon in the Mount Naomi Wilderness. It is still possible to remote trigger deep slab avalanches in the area, and you still might be able to trigger large avalanches from the flats below... Audible collapsing and shooting cracks are relevant red flags, but I plan to continue to avoid and stay out from under steep previously drifted slopes anyway.


It'll be mostly sunny again today, with 8500' high temperatures around 32 degrees and a fairly light west wind. There is a chance of some snow showers tonight, but with accumulations of less than an inch forecast, there is little to get your hopes up about. A north wind will shift from the east overnight and may be strong enough to displace the smog for a little while before the persistent high pressure system resumes it's domination over the weather. High pressure conditions and the inversion will control through at least the upcoming weekend.

Check out our one-stop weather page........HERE

general announcements

For a safer powder option; Discount lift tickets are available at Backcountry.com - Thanks to Ski Utah and the Utah Resorts, including Beaver Mountain. All proceeds go towards paying for Utah Avalanche Center avalanche and mountain weather advisories.

Utah Avalanche Center mobile app - Get your advisory on your iPhone along with great navigation and rescue tools.

Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting snow and avalanche conditions. You can also call us at 801-524-5304 or 800-662-4140, email by clicking HERE, or include #utavy in your tweet or Instagram.

Follow us at UAClogan on Twitter 

I'll issue these advisories on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday mornings. 

This advisory is produced by the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content. It describes only general avalanche conditions and local variations always exist.