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
Friday, April 04, 2003
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Good Morning. This is Bruce Tremper with the Forest Service
Today might be a good
candidate for a call-in-sick-for-work day with storm totals of 12-16 inches of
fairly light density snow in the Cottonwood Canyons with less snow on the
Yesterday, the new snow was relatively benign with the only activity being loose snow sluffs on the steep slopes running hard, icy surfaces. People occasionally found some isolated, soft wind slabs but they were fairly manageable and mostly right near the ridge tops. Today we should once again have relatively user-friendly conditions. You will be able to push the snow down the steep slopes in soft, loose snow sluffs, but it probably won’t be much of a problem unless it pushes you over a cliff, into trees or into a terrain trap such as a gully. You will also find only very localized places where the wind has created wind slabs that will crack out but they will be mostly soft and tend to break at your feet instead of above you. Be sure to put good slope cuts across any wind drifts in the new snow before you commit yourself.
Bottom Line (SLC,
Today, the danger is mostly LOW. But there is a MODERATE danger of loose snow sluffs and soft wind slabs on any slope approaching 40 degrees or steeper, meaning that there are localized places where you can trigger an avalanche. Also, the danger of damp to wet sluffs will rise to MODERATE today if we get sun warming on sun exposed slopes.
Western Unita Mountains - call 1-800-648-7433 or click here for weekend and holiday forecasts.
Logan: Call 435-797- 4146 or click here for the web site.
Today, we should have variable clouds today, then thicker clouds late this afternoon, tonight and on Saturday. The strong springtime sun may sneak in between periods of clouds and make the south facing slopes a bit damp or even wet today. Temperatures are in the single digits this morning and should rise to 10-15 degrees at 10,000’ and get up into the mid 20’s at 8,000’. Ridge top winds will be fairly light from the west, turning southwest today. We do have a weak disturbance moving through, which will give us some variable clouds. I’m not expecting much if any snow today but we should have a moist low pressure coming in for tonight and Saturday. Unfortunately, it looks like the center of the low will go straight over the top of us, which means that we probably won’t have enough wind to push the moist air up the mountains and we will be left with only about 4 inches of snow on Saturday.
For the extended forecast, this moist, unstable trough should continue to give us unsettled weather through Monday, giving us occasional periods of snow. The best times for snow look to be Saturday and then again on Sunday morning through Monday morning. Then we go into a strong high pressure ridge, which will bring in much warmer temperatures, then more wind later in the week with another storm about next weekend. In other words, a less intense version of the weather we had this past week.
Click here for more detailed mountain weather forecast and other weather links.
Finally, Tom Kimbrough will issue his last forecast this Sunday and after that, he retires. There’s certainly not enough room here to do justice to his 40 years spent in the mountains but I will post a retrospective of his life and career on the web later today. I often call him the Walter Cronkite of the avalanche world, and we’re certainly sorry to see him go.
To report backcountry snow and avalanche conditions, especially if you observe or trigger an avalanche, please leave a message on our answer machine at (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 7:00 on Saturday morning.
Thanks for calling!
For an explanation of avalanche danger ratings: