Ogden Avalanche Advisory

Forecaster: Evelyn Lees


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

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The avalanche danger is LEVEL 2 (MODERATE) in steep terrain with recent deposits of wind drifted snow, which will be most widespread on north through southeasterly facing slopes at mid and upper elevations. While natural avalanches are unlikely today, larger avalanches are possible in isolated places. The danger for a collapse triggering a deeper slide is also LEVEL 2 (MODERATE) above about 9,000’ on the same north through southeasterly facing slopes. Icy alpine conditions exist at the upper elevations – it will be very hard to stop if you slip on a steep, icy slope.


Storm totals ended up with generally 5 to 10” of dense snow in the Cottonwoods, and about 2 to 5” in the Park City, Ogden and Provo area mountains. Single digit temperatures abound in the Salt Lake and Park City mountains this morning, with teens to the north and south. The northwesterly winds finally calmed down late yesterday afternoon, and most stations are in the 5 to 15 mph range this morning, with the highest peaks averaging to 25 mph, with gusts to 35. Icy alpine conditions exist at the upper elevations, especially on the west and northwesterly facing wind scoured slopes.


The most interesting slide I heard about yesterday was a natural on the Park City side, which was 6 in to 4.5 ft deep, 80 ft wide, with the ice crust mid slab. It pulled on to a very low angle (20-25 degree), north facing slope at 9800'. A touring party kicking cornices released a scary, wide slide on north facing Kessler at 9800’ that took all the snow down to the ice layer, and ran about 1000' vertical. A natural soft slab, 16 inches deep by 100 feet wide occurred on the northeasterly facing slope of Lake Peak, between White and Red Pine, LCC, at 10,400'. In addition, there were reports of a few small collapses and of sensitive winds drifts at low elevations.


      Over the next 24 hours.

The dense wind slabs created yesterday will be even more stubborn today, making them more dangerous. They may not break out with cornice drops, slope cuts or the first turn, but instead break out above you when you are well on to the slope, with much more serious consequences. Once running, any slide could entrain snow down to the ice crust, creating longer running slide with a much deeper debris pile. The wind drifts will be most widespread on upper elevation north though southeasterly facing slopes, but drifting did occur at mid to lower elevations. Avoid drifts cross loaded along gully walls and steep mid slope break overs. Slope size should be involved in your stability analysis.


      Over the next 24 hours.

Collapsing, perhaps 2 slides breaking below the ice crust in teh Salt Lake and Park City area mountians and snow pit tests all indicate that the buried surface hoar and faceted layers are still weak and have energy. If you’ve ever wondered what a Quality 1 shear looked like, check out Jake’s great YouTube video from Friday, which failed on the buried surface hoar layer. If you hear any sort of collapsing, this is a “red flag” warning that you could trigger an avalanche below the rain/rime crust. The most likely place to get a collapse or trigger one of the deeper slides in the Ogden area mountians would be in wind loaded, upper elevation terrain, neat the high ridge lines, on slopes facing north through southeast facing slope.


A north to northwest flow will remain over the Wasatch mountains well into next week. A weak disturbance will bring increasing clouds today and tonight, but no snow is expected. The northwesterly winds are forecast to increase slightly into the 10 to 20 mph range, with averages up to 30 mph along the highest ridges. Temperatures will warm into the upper 20’s at 8,000’ and to near 20 along the ridges. There is a chance for a few inches of snow Tuesday night and then we’ll be high and dry until at least next weekend.


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.

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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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 by clicking HERE

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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.