Wow, what an active day. As forecast, there were many lingering wind slabs just waiting for a trigger. There were at least a dozen human triggered avalanches in the backcountry of the Salt Lake area mountains with many dozens of natural wind slabs. You can read many of the details in Current Conditions.
Probably the most interesting included one large, natural, cornice-triggered avalanche off Gobbler’s Knob into Alexander basin. Another huge unintentionally-triggered cornice on Gobbler’s that dropped a person onto the slope below, Yet another unintentionally-triggered cornice, which triggered a large avalanche on Cardiac Ridge, a skier triggered wind slab on Cardiac ridge, one in Days fork, Silver Fork and the usual rash of slides in the Brighton periphery, a wet avalanche on Murdock Peak. And there must have been many more that I did not hear about.
As near as I can tell, there were no injuries or worse.
The culprit was the very strong winds on Thursday afternoon from passing thunderstorms and continued strong winds Thursday night. The resulting deposits of wind drifted snow (wind slabs) rested on top of very light stellar snow right above the old snow surface. The slabs were very sensitive in the morning but settled out quite a bit by afternoon.
If that’s not enough, there were the usual hoards skiing and boarding the south face of Superior and as the sun warmed up the snow there was widespread, shallow, damp sluffs and slabs that cleaned out much of the upper mountain and ran to the transition.
The good visibility yesterday revealed several large natural avalanches, one cornice-triggered slide in Hogum Fork (Dresden Face) 2-4' x 200', one cornice-triggered slide on the Coalpit Face of the same size that stepped down to about 10' deep lower on the slope. Some of these may have occurred before yesterday.