Ogden Avalanche Advisory

Forecaster: Brett Kobernik


We are continuing the Avalanche Warning for the Western Uintas. While we have discontinued it for the Ogden, Salt Lake and Provo area mountains, dangerous conditions remain with a Level 3 (CONSIDERABLE) danger. With some clearing expected today people are likely to venture out into more serious terrain where the danger is most pronounced. This is a typical day for an accident.


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

Danger Rose Tutorial

The avalanche danger is Level 3 (CONSIDERABLE) for deep slab releases. A Level 2 (MODERATE) exists for lingering new snow instabilities as well as potential heat related activity as the sun effects the new snow and low elevation terrain heats up.


Clouds are hanging around yet this morning with light southerly winds and temperatures in the teens. The end of the storm produced some nice lower density snow however many folks noted an inversion from the mid portion of the storm. Not all observations noted the density change. Trail breaking was very difficult in most places that received lots of snow and I suspect it will be a bit strenuous today yet.


A natural avalanche cycle occurred early Saturday morning during a period of very intense snowfall. It appears that it mostly involved the new snow only but we didn’t get a good look around. Natural soft slabs 12 to 18” deep were noted. As new snow instabilities often do, things stabilized fairly rapidly. While you could find the weakness in the inverted new snow, it was not very sensitive to people especially as the day progressed. A small amount of wet loose snow avalanche activity occurred when the sun popped out. This may slow this progress for today as it will take a bit more heat to penetrate the sun crust.


      Over the next 24 hours.

If I were getting into the backcountry today, my biggest concern would be triggering an avalanche that breaks deep into persistent weak layers. It appears that the recent snow load only avalanched within the new snow. I feel that our pack is gaining strength and we may be able to put the deep slab to bed soon. However, we don’t have enough information to dismiss this yet and must treat it as a CONSIDERABLE danger until we gather more evidence of stability.

With a fairly large load added to a pack with persistent weakness, you don’t dive right into steep terrain directly after a storm. You hunt around looking for evidence of natural avalanches that may have failed on those weaker layers. You give the snowpack a little time to adjust to its new load. You combat your desire to ride the “steep and deep” with thoughts of a long career of backcountry travel versus getting into the big stuff too early and ending your career. To stay safe in the backcountry in the long run requires patience. You can’t always go to your favorite terrain even if today is your only day to get into the mountains.


      Over the next 24 hours.

The next concern is within the new snow itself. The new snow continued to settle and become less sensitive as the day progressed on Saturday. However, not many folks got a good feel of how things were behaving along the more exposed ridges. This may be a place where you still might find a soft slab to release within the new snow. Northerly through easterly facing terrain should be treated with caution especially along exposed ridges.


      Over the next 10 hours.

The last thing to consider is how direct sun will effect the new snow. As we approach spring, it’s hard to escape the more direct sun on the southerly slopes. While air temperatures won’t get that warm today, the sun may effect the new snow enough to make it unstable. Plan your route so you are not in runnout zones or gully bottoms below those steeper sunny slopes as the day progresses. Take into consideration that the Ogden area mountains have lots of low elevation northerly terrain that may start to feel effects from the heat as well.


Clouds should continue to dissipate as the day goes on. Ridgetop temperatures should get into the low 20s but may feel warmer when we see direct sun. Winds should remain fairly light from the west or northwest. We’ll be in a southwest flow over the next few days with a little warming and slightly breezy conditions. We may see some more precipitation later in the week.


Lost my snowboard. It fell out of the back of my truck at some point last Sunday off I 80, from Mt Aire, exit 132, to just pass the mouth of Big Cottonwood. Black M3, about 161 length. cochran.erinl@gmail.com

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.

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 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.