Ogden Avalanche Advisory

Forecaster: Brett Kobernik


Danger by aspect and elevation on slopes approaching 35° or steeper.
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The avalanche danger will be on the rise today with additional new snow and will most likely reach a solid CONSIDERABLE danger. Human triggered avalanches over a foot deep will be likely on numerous slopes facing northwest through southeast. Many recent avalanches are running through trees, consider the consequences of even a smaller avalanche.


There are broken skies this morning in the Ogden mountains. Temperatures are in the upper teens to low 20s and winds are light from the west along the mid elevation ridges. The most exposed locations are only gusting into the mid 20s.


No new avalanche activity was reported from the Ogden area.

It was another very active day avalanche wise in the backcountry in the Salt Lake region on Wednesday with numerous human triggered avalanches. The most notable was a soft slab that caught a skier near Figure 8 Hill and buried him to his waist. Other locations where human triggered avalanches occurred were the Ant Knolls, a couple off Little Water Peak, one off the Park City Ridgeline, Scotties Bowl in Little Cottonwood, four in Days Fork, one in Cardiff Fork, and a couple pockets in the Brighton side country. Most of these were in the 1 foot deep range and most were breaking on our buried surface hoar layer or near surface facets from the same period.

(Videos: Farmington ECT test, Kobernik, Wagner & Who's afraid of the big bad hangfire, Nalli)


      Over the next 24 hours.

Here's the facts: Surface hoar and near surface facets formed 10 days ago and is now buried. These are both a persistent weakness meaning they produce avalanches over a long period of time. Avalanche activity has occurred every day since they've been buried demonstrating their persistence. Some observations include reports of the snowpack collapsing. Propagation tests continue to show propagation in many areas. Another layer of surface hoar was noted on the surface over the last couple of days.

Here's my speculation: This persistent weakness will continue to produce avalanches today and there's a good chance it'll still be sensitive into the week end. Additional snow today will make the avalanches that much deeper. If the expected storm produces this weekend, avalanches could get into the scary large category. One last thought on this, widespread buried surface hoar is out of the ordinary for us in the Wasatch. This will likely take many experienced people off guard even though it's well documented.

NOTE: the buried surface hoar seems much less sensitive around the Snowbasin side country but more sensitive around the Ben Lomond area.


      Over the next 24 hours.

Deep slabs remain in the back of our minds especially in the thinner snowpack areas. These thinner areas now include many of the avalanche paths that avalanched in January and have been filled back in. This snow that's filled back in has faceted and is quite weak. Depending on the upcoming loading pattern, these paths may be setting up to run again.


We'll have periods of snow during the day with decreasing chances this afternoon. 2 to 5 inches is possible. Ridgetop temperatures will be in the low to mid 20s and winds should remain fairly light from a northerly direction. Friday we'll have partly cloudy skies then a storm lasting through the weekend could produce upwards of 2 inches of water weight in a southerly flow. This could mean another couple of feet of snow which will most definitely increase the avalanche danger.


Please contact Alta Central (801-742-2033) if you trigger a large avalanche in the backcountry, especially if you are adjacent to a ski area, to alert them to the slide and whether anyone is missing or not. Rescue teams can be exposed to significant hazard when responding to avalanches, and do not want to do so when unneeded. Thanks.

Discount Lift tickets: Ski Utah, Backcountry.com, Alta, Deer Valley, Park City, The Canyons, Wolf Mountain, Snowbasin, Beaver Mountain, Brighton, Sundance, and Solitude have donated a limited number of tickets for sale at discounted prices.

Wasatch Powderbird Guides flight plan.

Dawn Patrol Forecast Hotline, updated by 05:30:888-999-4019 option 8.

Daily observations are frequently posted by 10 pm each evening.

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We appreciate all your avalanche and snow observations. You can also call us at 801-524-5304 or 800-662-4140, or email to uac@utahavalanchecenter.org

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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.

We will update this forecast tomorrow morning. Thanks for calling.

This information does not apply to developed ski areas or highways where avalanche control is normally done.  This advisory is from the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur.

This advisory provided by the USDA Forest Service, in partnership with:

The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center, Utah Division of State Parks and Recreation, Utah Division of Emergency Management, Salt Lake County, Salt Lake Unified Fire Authority and the friends of the La Sal Avalanche Center. See our Sponsors Page for a complete list.