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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Good morning, this is Bruce
Tremper with the
It was a very warm night with
breezy winds from the southwest. The
temperatures this morning are a balmy 37 degrees at 10,000’ and 47 degrees at
8,000’. The backcountry snow conditions have been
described in various terms including, “not to be
confused with high quality”, “wind-jacked” and “slabby”. What this means is that the warm snow and
high winds on Monday turned most of the wind exposed slopes into dunes of
dense, wind drifted snow that range from punchy to hard Styrofoam. Down lower in the more wind sheltered slopes,
it’s not as grim, but the warm temperatures have made things a bit mushy. Today is probably a good day to ca
Although yesterday, we could still find some of the old, weak layers of surface hoar buried in the snowpack, the warm temperatures and time have healed them up pretty well and they were hard to shear and we don’t think they will be much of a problem from here on out. The snow is mostly stable with the exception of isolated areas of fresh wind drifts in the upper elevation wind exposed slopes where I could still crack out some localized, hard slabs but they were quite stubborn.
Bottom Line (
The avalanche danger is mostly LOW with isolated areas of MODERATE danger on steep slopes with fresh deposits of wind drifted snow. If we get any significant amounts of new snow during the day, you can expect the avalanche danger to rise.
This storm on our doorstep is not looking as good as the weather maps hinted couple days ago. Although colder, unstable air arrives on Friday, the flow is forecast to turn northerly much quicker than we like to see and the wind speeds should drop quickly. This means that we don’ t have enough wind blowing the moist air up the mountains to make for good orographic precipitation, which is a fancy way of saying that we should have relatively light snow showers on Friday instead of a big dump. In the mean time, later today and tonight we will have light snow showers with probably under 3 inches accumulated with continued moderate to strong southwest ridge top winds. Ridge top temperatures should be in the mid 30’s today with upper 30’s at 8,000’. On Friday the ridge top temperatures should drop into the mid teens with 5-15 mph winds from the north and northwest. The extended forecast calls for continued cold and moist, unstable air lingering through Sunday with possibly better chance for significant snow on Sunday. Then, finally, there is another storm for about Tuesday and Wednesday.
For specific digital forecasts for selected mountain areas from the National Weather Service, click the links below or choose your own specific location at the National Weather Service Digital Forecast Page:
If you are getting into the backcountry, please give us a call and let us know what you’re seeing, especially if you trigger an avalanche. You can leave a message at 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 801-524-4030.
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.
Thanks for calling.
For more detailed weather information go to our Mountain Weather Advisory
For an explanation of avalanche danger ratings: