Wasatch Cache National Forest

In partnership with: The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Forecast Center, Utah Department of Public Safety Division of Comprehensive Emergency Management, Salt Lake County, and Utah State Parks

 

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Avalanche advisory

Monday,MARCH 4, 20027:30 AM

 

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Good morning, this is Ethan Greene with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.Today is Monday, March 4, 2002, and itís 7:30 a.m.

 

Current Conditions:

Its warming up and for the first time in several days I donít need a negative sign to describe the temperature.Overnight low temperatures were in the 5 to 10 degree range at both 8,000í and 10,000í.The winds have shifted to the west and have been blowing in the 25 mph range along the highest ridgelines and in the 10 mph range in lower areas.

 

Snow surface conditions range from thin sun and heat crusts to wind slabs and of course soft settled powder on shady slopes.

 

Avalanche Conditions:

Our warming trend started out slow, but today it will feel more like March. Temperatures have been warming for the past two days, but today we will break the 30 degree mark at 8,000í.The cold temperatures made loose snow or sluff avalanches possible on most aspects, but today dry sluffs will be confined to the shady slopes.Wet sluffs are possible on the sunny aspects, but because the warm up has been slow I suspect the wet activity will be limited and limited to mid and low elevation areas.Look out for signs of increasing wet slide activity such as roller balls and point releases off of the exposed rocks, and remember that loose snow avalanches can be deadly if they push you off of a cliff or into a gully.

 

Throughout the Wasatch Mountains the distribution of buried weak layers remains highly variable.While there are many areas where winter enthusiasts can travel safely, areas with buried instabilities still exist.The hard part is determining the difference and as always the devil lies in the details.Relatively safe and fairly dangerous areas exist in close proximity. Please continue to evaluate each steep slope before crossing, and poke around with your arms or poles to look for buried layers of loose weak snow.††

Bottom Line:

The danger of human triggered avalanches is MODERATE on slopes steeper than about 35 degrees.Human triggered avalanches and sluffs within the surface snow are possible.

The possibility of triggering a larger and more dangerous avalanche remains.

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(Provo Area Mountains and Western Uinta Mountains)

These areas have had a thin snowpack most of the winter, and the sugary weak snow is more common than in the Cottonwood Canyons.The danger of human triggered avalanches is more widespread in the Provo and Western Uinta Mountains, especially where wind drifted.

 

(Ogden Area Mountains)

Same as above.

 

Mountain Weather:

Today will again be a little warmer than the last few with temperatures will rising into the low 30ís at 8,000í and upper teens at 10,000í.Skies will be mostly sunny and west winds will blow in the 10 to 20 mph range.Tonight temperatures will drop into the mid teens at 8,000í, and by early Tuesday morning ridge-top winds will increase into the 30 mph range.A series of weak disturbances will move trough mid week bringing clouds and some snow to the mountains.

 

General Information:

The Wasatch Powderbird Guides will be flying in the Bountiful Sessions today.For more information call 521-6040 ext. 5280.

 

The Banff Mountain Film Festival will be at the U of Uís Kingsbury Hall on March 12 and 13, at 7pm.Tickets are $6.50.Donít miss this great benefit for the Utah Avalanche Center!

 

To report backcountry snow and avalanche conditions, especially if you observe or trigger an avalanche, you can leave a message at (801) 524-5304 or 1-800-662-4140.Or you can e-mail an observation to [email protected] .org, or you can fax an observation to 801-524-6301.

 

For more detailed mountain weather and avalanche information, your can call 801-364-1591, which weíll try to have updated by around noon each day.

 

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.

 

Drew Hardesty will update this advisory by 7:30 on Tuesday morning.

Thanks for calling!

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For more detailed weather information go to our Mountain Weather Advisory

National Weather Service - Salt Lake City - Snow.

For an explanation of avalanche danger ratings:

http://www.avalanche.org/usdanger.htm