Ogden Avalanche Advisory

Forecaster: Drew Hardesty


The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center will be teaching 1 evening/1 field day introductory and advanced avalanche classes this winter beginning Thursday, Dec 16th. We’re calling them 101 and Advanced Skills classes….check them out on our calendar or Education page.

Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort and the Utah Avalanche Center (UAC) are once again partnering to offer the second annual Freeride Avalanche Summit, Dec. 16-17. The two-day clinic is targeted towards advanced and expert skiers and riders who want practical and professional instruction on avalanche awareness, safety and rescue. Find more information on our home page calendar or go to Snowbird.com


Danger by aspect and elevation on slopes approaching 35° or steeper.
(click HERE for tomorrow's danger rating)

Danger Rose Tutorial

Pockets of MODERATE (Level 2) danger exist for wet avalanching on the low to mid-elevation northerly slopes. Avoid any steep terrain features when the snow becomes overly sloppy and unsupportable.


We have overcast skies, warm mountain temps and increasing west to southwest winds…all a prelude for tonight’s Pacific storm system. In the meantime, we have yet another poor refreeze of the snow here in mid-December. Temps are in the mid to upper-30s. Adding insult to injury, the security blanket of clouds offset much radiational cooling of the snow surfaces. Winds backed west to southwest overnight and are blowing 15-20mph. I expect they’ll easily be twice that speed by early evening. Everything but high northerly aspects are pretty well sun damaged, but the Saturday night rime crust on the high northerlies poses little issue for today’s tools of the trade.


No reports of avalanches came in from the backcountry, though ski area control teams continue to release a smattering of 12-18” deep slides in unopened terrain with explosives. One report had a slide up to 3’ deep, with instability perhaps accentuated by the heat wave. It’s clear the marginal weak interfaces require quite the trigger, as evidenced by the control work and the slab avalanche in Timpanogos' Primrose Cirque from a couple of days ago. Recall that the trigger here was loose snow cascading down from perhaps 1500’ above.


      Over the next 12 hours.

It’s all about impact. The number one concern today will be the low to mid-elevation northerly terrain that hasn’t seen a decent refreeze for 48 hours or so. The free water only loosens the bonds between the grains, making them cohesion-less and then unsupportable. Avoid all the usual terrain traps, such as gullies and creek bottoms, and avoid travel beneath steep roofs, which are rapidly shedding their snow from the past two storms.


No size identified.
No trend identified.

Continue to practice safe travel protocol and train with your beacon and train with a new efficient shovelling technique (here's a great tutorial by Backcountry Access).


We’ll have overcast skies with temps soaring again into the upper 30s at 10,000’. The southwesterly winds will increase throughout the day. True, we’re grasping at straws a bit with things to talk about in the in avalanche world, but that oughtta change in a hurry starting tonight. A decent quick hitter of a storm plows through tonight into tomorrow that should bring 6-10” to the areas favored by a northwesterly flow. Semi-clearing for Thursday and Friday before what looks to be a firehose of moist and warm westerly-flow storms trained on us from later Saturday into next week.


If you trigger an avalanche in the backcountry - especially if you are adjacent to a ski area – please call the following teams 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.

Salt Lake – Alta Central (801-742-2033)

Ogden – Snowbasin Patrol Dispatch (801-620-1017)

Provo – Sundance Patrol Dispatch (801-223-4150)

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.

Wasatch Powderbird Guides flight plan. Today, WPG may be flying the Daisy Bell avalanche mitigation device in and around Alta. In addition WPG may do limited non commercial training and reconnaissance throughout our entire permit area. WPG opening day for the 2011 season is Wednesday December 15.

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

Daily observations are frequently posted by 10 pm each evening.

Subscribe to the daily avalanche advisory e-mail click HERE.

UDOT canyon closures UDOT at (801) 975-4838

You have the opportunity to participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting avalanche and snow observations. You can also call us at 801-524-5304 or 800-662-4140, or email to uac@utahavalanchecenter.org

Donate to your favorite non-profit – The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center. The UAC depends on contributions from users like you to support our work.

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.