Ogden Avalanche Advisory

Forecaster: Evelyn Lees


The Utah Avalanche Center is holding a fund raising auction of donated gear to support forecasting and education. We have Black Diamond and Surface Skis, several OR jackets, a BCA airbag pack, and some Scarpa AT boots. Go to ebay and search for "Utah Avalanche Center” or click HERE.

We also still have discount lift tickets for Alta, Snowbird, Brian Head, Sundance, and Wolf Mountain. All proceeds go towards avalanche forecasting and education.


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

Danger Rose Tutorial

Pockets of CONSIDERABLE avalanche danger exist for human triggered deep slab avalanches on west through north through easterly facing slopes at the upper elevations. While the likelihood of triggering one of these avalanches has decreased greatly, any slide breaking near the ground could be unsurvivable. Also look for and avoid any new wind drifts, especially on the shady slopes, and stay off steeper slopes when the snow becomes damp.


Even with clear skies, balmy weather conditions continued through the night, with temperatures in the Ogden area mountains stalled out in the in the upper twenties to low 30’s. The southeasterly winds are light this morning, averaging less than 10 mph at most stations, though a few peaks favored by southerly flow have bumped up to 20 mph. Yesterday’s warm temps dampened the snow on all aspects below about 9,000’, but there is soft, dry snow on a supportable base on upper elevation, sheltered, shady slopes.


It was not an active day in the backcountry - a few shallow, small sensitive wind drifts were triggered, as well as roller balls in warm snow, with a few natural damp sluffs occurring when the sun broke out in the afternoon. A great Ogden observation by Craig Orum and Brian Pollick HERE.


      Over the next 24 hours.

Time is changing the snow pack – the foundation of weak facets continues to be in the spot light, easily found by digging a snow pit or simply jamming a ski pole deeply into the snowpack. It is a winter of patience, and most people are dealing with this deep instability by avoiding the steep slopes where slides have the potential to break near the ground. (Upper elevation west through north through east). Hard slabs are unforgiving, as they break above you, increasing the chance for a deep burial.

But the basal facets may have to share the red carpet soon – a fairly widespread second layer of weak facets that was on the surface has managed to get capped off and preserved under a few inches of new snow and/or rime over the past few days. This layer has the potential to be very sensitive if we get much snow in the next few days.


      Over the next 10 hours.

The combination of very warm temperatures, sun, high thin clouds and possibly a little rain will heat the surface snow on almost all aspects at the lower and mid elevations today. As the snow becomes damp it will be easy to trigger small sluffs, so avoid any terrain where a sluff could take you for a ride or pile up deeply such as gullies and creek bottoms.


      Over the next 12 hours.

Yesterday’s few hours of northwesterly winds created shallow cracky wind drifts on a variety of aspects at the mid and upper elevations. They’re sitting on that layer of small, sugary facets, and are quite easy to trigger. They are just big enough to knock you off balance and take you for a ride if they break out above you on a steep enough slope. Today’s southerly winds could create a few more of these sensitive slabs on the upper elevation northerly facing slopes. (Mark White photo - Cardiff)


This morning’s clear skies will rapidly give way to high and mid level clouds ahead of a weak storm system that should bring some snow to the mountains. The southerly winds will remain light today and tonight, averaging less than 15 mph, and temperatures will warm to unseasonable highs in the low 40s at 8,000’ and into the low 30s at 10,000’. A few snow showers are possible this afternoon, and then more widespread light snow tonight and tomorrow morning could give a 3 to 6 “storm” total. Another small storm is on track for late Monday into Wednesday.


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)

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

Twitter Updates for your mobile phone http://utahavalanchecenter.org/twitter)

Daily observations are frequently posted by 10 pm each evening.

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UDOT canyon closures UDOT at (801) 975-4838

Wasatch Powderbird Guides does daily updates about where they'll be operating on this blog http://powderbird.blogspot.com/ .

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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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.