In partnership with: The Friends of the Utah Avalanche 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 Drew Hardesty with the
The storm is on our doorstep, and as of 5:30am, itís just beginning to snow.† With current temperatures at most mountain locations in the 30ís, weíll be starting with a rain/snow line at 7000í that will drop to the valleys by afternoon.† Winds are still strong, averaging 25-30mph from the southwest, gusting into the 50ís. This looks to be a classic Wasatch storm with all the ingredients lined up for some epic snowfall: lots of moisture, an unstable airmass, a strong cold front, and a shift to a northwest flow after the front, with the lake effect kicking in.†
This morning the danger will be low, but as the snow starts piling up, the hazard will certainly be on the rise.† As always, itís important to get out before the storm to map out what the new snow will be falling on, as this could have a significant effect upon avalanche conditions.† In our forecast areas, the snow will be falling on a variety of snow surfaces, ranging from bulletproof windslabs and suncrusts to softer surfaces with yesterdayís inch or so on top.† On the southerly aspects at higher elevations, avalanches are likely to run fast and far, entraining lots of snow on the slick crusts formed in the past week.† With strong southwest winds accompanying this morningís snowfall, be alert for sensitive wind drifts along the lee of the ridgelines and as always avoid any fresh deposits of wind blown snow.† As a last reminder, many folks have been caught on days when the avalanche danger increased over the course of the day.† ALWAYS BE ALERT FOR CHANGING CONDITIONS.† Itís not enough to make an assessment at the beginning of your tour and then not adjust as conditions warrant.
Bottom Line (
The avalanche danger is LOW this morning, but will be on the rise to perhaps CONSIDERABLE with the new snow and strong winds.† The hazard will be most pronounced at the upper elevations today.†
We may see as much as a foot of new snow today, with another foot or so tonight.† Residual instability and the lake effect will likely keep the snow falling tomorrow as well.† Strong southwest winds will be 20-30mph this morning, shifting to the west by afternoon and dropping to 15-20mph.† Temperatures will drop into the 20ís with the arrival of the cold front by midday.† A ridge will develop Tuesday behind this storm with the possibility of more snow for 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 youíre 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 801-524-6301.
Friends of the
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 on Monday morning.
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