Wasatch Cache National Forest

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:


To have this advisory automatically e-mailed to you each day free of charge, visit: http://www.mailermailer.com/x?oid=16351h †††††††††

For photos of avalanches and avalanche phenomenon, visit:http://www.avalanche.org/%7Euac/photos_03-04.htm†††† (Updated 3/16)

Photos sent in by observers throughout the season visit:http://www.avalanche.org/~uac/obphotos/observer.html†††† (Updated 3/12)

For a list of backcountry avalanche activity, visit:http://www.avalanche.org/%7Euac/Avalanche_List.htm†††† (Updated 3/9)


Early morning preliminary information by about 6:00 am: 801-364-1591


Avalanche advisory

Wednesday, March 17, 2004,†† 7:30 am


Good morning, this is Evelyn Lees with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.Today is Wednesday, March 17, 2004, and itís 7:30 a.m.This forecast is brought to you in partnership with the Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center, supported in part by Black Diamond Equipment.


Current Conditions:

The seemingly unshakable high pressure has northern Utah under a dry, northwest flow this morning. Skies are clear, and temperatures have cooled into the low to mid 20ís at most elevations. The northwesterly winds are quite brisk, with hourly averages in the 20 to 35 mph range along the ridges.The highest, windy peaks have speeds over 40 mph, with gusts near 60.


On sunny slopes, the snow surface will be frozen rock hard this morning, but will gradually soften as the day proceeds, and eventually reach the slush stage on most steep sunny slopes and on slopes of all aspects at the mid and lower elevations.The shady upper elevation slopes have a lot of wind damage, with only the smallest stashes of soft powder remaining.


Avalanche Conditions:

Like most things in life, timing is everything, and that includes spring travel in the mountains. While the avalanche danger is low early in the day, it increases as the snowpack heats up and the bonds between the grains start to melt.Once the snow becomes wet and sloppy, like a slurpy, it is time to get off that steep slope.Switch to a cooler aspect, get on lower angle slopes, or head home for the day.


Snow conditions at the upper elevations continue the change.There are new hard wind slabs sitting on weak snow that could crack out beneath you, taking you for a ride, and some steep sunny slopes have exceptionally unconsolidated wet loose snow, especially near rocks. So whenever youíre traveling on steep slopes, evaluate the stability carefully, and go one at a time.


Bottom Line for the Wasatch Range, including the Salt Lake, Park City, OGDEN, AND PROVO AREA MOUNTAINS:

The avalanche danger is mostly low this morning.With day time heating, the danger of wet, loose sluffs will rise to MODERATE on steep low and mid elevation slopes of all aspects and on all steep sun exposed slopes.


Uinta Mountains:For Uinta specific information, click on Western Uintas on the advisory page or phone 1-800-648-7433.

Logan: click HERE or call 435-797-4146


Mountain Weather:

Skies will be mostly sunny today, with breezy northwesterly winds. Speeds will average 20 to 30 mph this morning, with stronger gusts, but there is a chance the winds will decrease by afternoon as they did yesterday. Temperatures will warm into the mid 40ís at 8,000í, and near 30 at 10,000í.Clear skies tonight, with lows near 30.Warmer on Thursday, with highs in the mid 30ís at 10,000í and near 50 at 8,000í. Looking into the future, the high pressure is unquestionably overstaying its welcome, with dry conditions and very warm temperatures forecast through the weekend and into early next week.


For specific digital forecasts for the Salt Lake, Provo or Ogden mountains, CLICK HERE.


General Information:

The Wasatch Powderbird Guides did not fly yesterday, and if they fly today they will be in Snake Creek, American Fork and Cascade.


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.


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.


Bruce Tremper will update this advisory Thursday morning.


Thanks for calling.