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

Tuesday, November 26, 2002

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Good morning, this is Bruce Tremper with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.Today is Tuesday, November 26, 2002, and itís 7:30 am.

 

Current Conditions:

The 4-7 inches of light snow that fell on Sunday and Sunday night gave the snow a well-needed freshening up.Turning and riding conditions were actually quite nice yesterday if you knew where to look.The hot tip today is to stay on gentle slopes 15-25 degrees, out of the wind and sun and on upper elevation slopes that already have a base layer.Yesterday, it was a chilly face mask and keep-your-hood-on day up on the ridges in a stiff east wind with temperatures in the single digits.Despite the cold temperatures yesterday, the sun crusted up the new snow on the southwest through southeast facing slopes.But overnight, some high clouds have streamed in from the north and ridge top temperatures have risen up into the 20ís.Winds are generally light from the north.

 

Avalanche Conditions:

The stiff winds yesterday from the east and northeast created some pockets of fresh, soft and mostly shallow wind slabs along the ridges, mostly on south and west facing slopes and the winds occasionally dipped down off the ridges as well.I was able to intentionally kick off several sensitive, shallow, soft slabs yesterday as I traveled along the upper elevation ridges.These were generally less than a foot deep and quite soft, so they were not particularly dangerous unless they were on a slope with bad consequences.There were also a few damp sluffs yesterday as the new snow heated up in the sun.For the most part, the new snow doesnít weigh enough to cause deeper, larger avalanches breaking into old snow and today the main danger will be from the fresh wind slabs.We may also have a few damp sluffs on the steep sun exposed slopes again today.

 

Bottom Line (SLC, Ogden, and Provo Area Mountains):

The avalanche danger today LOW except for pocket of MODERATE danger on any slope steeper than about 35 degrees with recent deposits of wind drifted snow.

 

Mountain Weather:

Today we should have variable high clouds with ridge top winds from the north around 10 mph and ridge top temperatures around 20-25 degrees.8,000í temperatures should rise up to near 30 with overnight lows around 12.The storm that pushed through on Sunday has formed a closed low over California and as that low moves west through Arizona by the weekend, it will push some clouds up into Utah from the south.This may bring snow to southern Utah and probably the south slopes of the Uinta Mountains but it probably wonít do much for the Wasatch Range.Otherwise, the long term weather charts continue to look depressing with a big ridge over us.

 

General Information:

UDOT in Little Cottonwood Canyon will be sighting in the cannons on Wednesday morning and shooting from Tanners through Superior from 7-8 am.The road will be closed while they do this and it would not be a good idea to do a dawn patrol on those slopes on Wednesday morning.

 

A great Christmas present this year for someone you love would be an avalanche beacon.If you want to know which one to buy, Iíve posted a couple recent tests of various brands of avalanche beacons on the web. Point your browser to www.avalanche.org and click on Salt Lake, then on Education.At the same location, you can find a complete list of avalanche talks and multi-day classes.

 

To report backcountry snow and avalanche conditions, especially if you observe or trigger an avalanche, call (801) 524-5304 or 1-800-662-4140, or email to [email protected] or fax to 801-524-6301.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.

 

Evelyn Lees will update this advisory by 7:30 on Wednesday morning.

 

Thanks for calling!

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National Weather Service - Salt Lake City - Snow.

For an explanation of avalanche danger ratings:

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