Wasatch Cache National Forest
In partnership with: Utah Division of State Parks and Recreation, The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center, Utah Department of Emergency Services and Homeland Security and Salt Lake County.



Sunday, November 13, 2005  5pm
Good afternoon, this is Drew Hardesty with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather bulletin.  Today is Sunday, November 13th, and it’s about 5pm. 

The annual report for 2004-05 is now on the web. (Click HERE, 8mb)

Current Conditions:   
Looking back the last couple of days, Friday’s rain event is responsible for a crust of varying thicknesses up to about 10,500’ and is now blanketed by Saturday’s 4-5” of thick creamy powder.  This caps a 12-18” mostly stable snowpack and best described the upper elevation shady slopes on Sunday until a rain/rime event pushed through mid afternoon.

Avalanche Discussion: 
As of Sunday afternoon, there’s wasn’t much happening with the snowpack.  The concern, however, will be with the continued and expected snowfall of 10-16” through late Monday coupled with strong west to northwesterly winds.  If the forecast verifies, both sensitive new wind drifts and long running sluffs can be expected on steep upper elevation slopes.  With a fair amount of snow to blow around, the strong winds will load starting zones further down the slope, crossload steep gulleys and drift snow onto more than just easterly aspects.  These new drifts will look pillowy and rounded in the encatchment zones.  And classically, cracking and collapsing are two signs to alert the savvy traveler to the present instability.  Remember it’s not too early in the season to get into trouble: Exhibit A would be the season’s first fatality in Colorado just last week.  If you’re out on Monday, tune in to changing weather conditions and a rising danger and don’t leave your shovel, probe, and transceiver in the car. 

Mountain Weather: 
Backed by a moist westerly flow and Monday’s forecasted strong cold front, the Ogden and Salt Lake mountains should see 4-8” tonight and another 4-8” on Monday in favored locales, just what our “vertically challenged” snowpack is desperate for.  The westerly winds will build to 25-35 mph tonight and increase to 35-45 mph tomorrow, shifting northwesterly after frontal passage about midday.  Current 10,000’ temperatures in the mid twenties will plummet to near 12 degrees post frontal as well.  Winds and snowfall will taper off rapidly late Monday as the flow shifts northerly and will remain north to northwesterly as a ridge builds to the west.  Ridgetop temperatures rebound to the mid-thirties by mid-week.

We will update this advisory as conditions warrant.  Stay tuned.    

Click HERE for a season history chart by month.

To have this advisory automatically e-mailed to you each day, click HERE.  (You must re-sign up this season even if you were on the list last season.)

We are looking for feed back on our MOCK-UP of our new advisory format.  Let us know what you think!  http://www.avalanche.org/~uac/newadvisory

Thanks for calling.