Avalanche Advisory
Advisory: Ogden Area Mountains Issued by Brett Kobernik for Thursday - January 14, 2016 - 7:25am
bottom line

The overall avalanche danger is MODERATE today. Diligently look for fresh drifts on a variety of aspects especially around ridges and terrain features. Human triggered avalanches are likely but probably won't be all that large. THE AVALANCHE DANGER WILL INCREASE AS WE ADD MORE NEW SNOW TONIGHT AND INTO FRIDAY.

special announcement
  1. Tonight at Snowbird: 6pm - Utah Adventure Journal/Snowbird Speaker series continues with UAC forecaster Drew Hardesty
  2. Ice Climber's Avalanche Awareness Workshop in Salt Lake City and Ogden from 5:30-7:00.
  3. Announcing a Dutch Auction for a pair of 180 cm Vapor Nano Skis donated to the Utah Avalanche Center by La Sportiva. Here's an opportunity to learn a piece of economic trivia, practice your decision-making skills, benefit the Utah Avalanche Center, and smoke your friends up the skin track. These skis measure 130/103/120mm and weigh 1200 g (!). List price is $1,200. Here's the deal: We are offering these skis for sale to the first person that contacts us with a commitment to purchase (including their credit card information). THE PRICE TODAY IS $1150.00 AND WILL DROP $50 TOMORROW. The price will continue to drop by $50 per day until someone buys the skis at that day's price or we decide the price has gone too low and end the auction with no sale. To ask questions or accept the current price, email us at [email protected]. We'll toss in a free UAC t-shirt or trucker hat and handful of Clif Bar product. For local pick up or we'll ship (you pay our shipping cost). No trades for size - we only have one pair.
current conditions

Yesterday's south wind blew snow around especially in the higher terrain and formed some fresh sensitive drifts. The direction has switched more westerly and has slowed some but still in the moderate speed range along the higher terrain. Ridgetop temperatures are in the low to mid teens. 2 to 4 inches of snow has fallen this morning.

recent activity

The southerly wind on Wednesday created numerous fresh wind slabs. Some of these were releasing naturally during as they were forming. (photo below: Gonzalez) A number of people that were out also noted that they were able to get these to crack out underfoot fairly easy. They were generally small and what I would call "manageable" if you were aware that they were forming and you've had some experience dealing with wind slabs in the past. Some were large enough to knock a person over. Most wouldn't make a sled rider flinch.

Avalanche Problem 1
type aspect/elevation characteristics
over the next 24 hours

The main thing to be aware of today is wind slabs.

  • Yesterday's wind slabs may still be sensitive today.
  • Today's new snow combined with slightly gusty conditions may form new drifts as well.
  • Some of these drifts may have formed on top of weak near surface facets which formed since last weekend.
  • These wind slabs can be found on a variety of aspects and crossloaded terrain features. They will be most pronounced along higher ridges on the east half of the compass.

For more detailed thoughts on what to anticipate over the next week, check out Doug Wewer's excellent observation from Hell's Canyon

Also check my Forecast Addendum: Jan 14, 2016 - Weak layer outlook


We are seeing snow in the mountains this morning with a few inches accumulation so far. We may see a couple more but this is a fairly small snow event which will taper off as the day goes on. Wind speeds are going to be a bit blustery especially along the higher ridges this morning and will slow during the day. High temperatures along the ridges will remain in the teens. Another more potent storm will move in tonight and last into Friday giving us a better shot of snow which might add another 8 to 12 inches if we're lucky.

general announcements

Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting snow and avalanche conditions. You can also call us at 801-524-5304, email by clicking HERE, or include #utavy in your tweet or Instagram.

To get help in an emergency (to launch a rescue) in the Wasatch, call 911.  Be prepared to give your GPS coordinates or the run name. Dispatchers have a copy of the Wasatch Backcountry Ski map.

Backcountry Emergencies. It outlines your step-by-step method in the event of a winter backcountry incident.

If you trigger an avalanche in the backcountry, but no one is hurt and you do not need assistance, please notify the nearest ski area dispatch to avoid a needless response by rescue teams. Thanks.

Salt Lake and Park City – Alta Central (801-742-2033), Canyons Resort/PCMR Dispatch (435)615-1911

Snowbasin Resort Dispatch (801-620-1017), Powder Mountain Dispatch (801-745-3772 x 123).

Sundance Dispatch (801-223-4150)

EMAIL ADVISORY  If you would like to get the daily advisory by email you will need to subscribe here.​ 

DAWN PATROL Hotline updated daily by 5-530am - 888-999-4019 option 8.

Twitter Updates for your mobile phone - DETAILS

UDOT canyon closures:  LINK TO UDOT, or on Twitter, follow @UDOTavy, @CanyonAlerts or @AltaCentral

Utah Avalanche Center mobile app - Get your advisory on your iPhone along with great navigation and rescue tools.

Powderbird Helicopter Skiing - Blog/itinerary for the day

Lost or Found something in the backcountry? - http://nolofo.com/

Ski Utah mobile snow updates

To those skinning uphill at resorts:  it is your responsibility to know the resort policy on uphill travel.  You can see the uphill travel policy for each resort here. IMPORTANT: Before skinning or hiking at a resort under new snow conditions, check in with Ski Patrol.  Resorts can restrict or cut off access if incompatible with control and grooming operations.

Benefit the Utah Avalanche Center when you shop from Backcountry.com or REI:  Click this link for Backcountry.com or this link to REI, shop, and they will donate a percent of your purchase price to the UAC.  Both offer free shipping (with some conditions) so this costs you nothing!

Benefit the Utah Avalanche Center when you buy or sell on ebay - set the Utah Avalanche Center as a favorite non-profit in your ebay account here and click on ebay gives when you buy or sell.  You can choose to have your seller fees donated to the UAC, which doesn't cost you a penny.

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 exist.