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
Sunday, February 02, 2003
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Good Morning. This is Ethan Greene with the
Yesterday high temperatures
at 8,000 were in the upper 40s and we set a new record high of 63 degrees at
Storm totals this morning are
about 10 inches of snow and 0.8 water in upper Big and Little Cottonwood
Canyons, 5 inches of snow and 0.7 water along the Park City Ridgeline, 5
inches of snow and 0.3 water in the
In most mountain areas the temperatures dropped below zero and snow started to fall about . Along the upper ridgelines the winds were 20 to 30 mph from the southwest until about . Currently the winds are blowing 15 to 20 mph from the northwest.
Under the new snow there are a variety of firm crusts. These crusts are the strongest on east through southwest aspects. Before the cold air rolled in the entire snowpack was wet below about 8,000.
Today is going to be an active day in the mountains. Ample amounts of new snow and strong winds will create sensitive wind drifts along exposed ridgelines and the sides of gullies and subridges. In areas where the new snow is able to bond to the old surface, slides braking into the old snow are likely. This scenario is possible on all aspects, but most likely to occur on slopes with a northerly aspect.
In mid and low elevation areas the entire snowpack was wet prior to the storm. The cold temperatures this morning will cause the snowpack to freeze solid this morning. However, if youre in an area where the new snow has insolated the old wet snowpack, avalanches breaking into deeper layers are possible. As youre moving about, dig down below the old snow surface and if you can make a good snowball with the old snow you might want to avoid traveling on our under steep slopes.
Bottom Line (SLC,
The avalanche danger today is CONSIDERABLE on all slopes above about 9,000. With more snow and wind in the forecast the avalanche danger may rise to HIGH this afternoon. Elsewhere the avalanche danger is generally MODERATE, however there may be localized areas below 8,500 where the snowpack is still wet and the avalanche danger is higher.
A moist Pacific Storm will continue to bring snow and wind to the mountains today. Temperatures will be cooling most of the day with highs in the mid 20s at 8,000 and upper teens at 10,000. Winds will be shifting from the southwest to the north trough the day. I expect wind speeds in the 15 mph range in mid elevation areas and 25 mph range along the ridgelines. Snow will continue through most of the day and then taper off during the late afternoon and evening. I expect an additional 5 to 8 inches by sundown. Unsettled weather will continue on Monday with mostly cloudy skies and scattered snow showers.
The Friends of the
Tonight there will be a fundraiser
for the Wasa
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.
I will update this advisory by on Monday morning.
Thanks for calling!
For an explanation of avalanche danger ratings: