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, December 11, 2005  7:30am
Good morning, this is Drew Hardesty with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.  Today is Sunday, December 11, 2005, and it’s about 7:30 am.

On Monday, December 12th between 10am-2pm, UDOT will be sighting in their artillery for the Kessler, Argenta, and Stairs Gulch avalanche paths.  Please avoid these areas during this time.  UDOT also has a highway avalanche control work hotline for Little Cottonwood road, which is updated as needed. 801-975-4838.

Up coming avalanche awareness talks by the UAC staff include:
Dec 13  7 pm            REI, 3285 E, 3300 S, SLC
Dec 14  6:30 pm       Mountain High Motorsports, 8262 S Redwood Rd, West Jordan
Dec 14  7 pm            South Valley Unitarian, 6876 S Highland Dr. 

Current Conditions:   
Under clear skies, mountain temperatures this morning are in the mid twenties at the higher elevations, cooling along the mountain drainages and basins to the low teens.  Winds are light and northwesterly.  Shady slopes have good soft settled powder interspersed with localized wind damage while sunny aspects are well crusted.

Avalanche Conditions:
Except for a few shallow wind drifts cracking out along the highest ridgelines, no avalanche activity was reported yesterday from the backcountry.  Even avalanche control work at the ski areas in uncompacted terrain produced no results.   Folks heading for the bolder lines, however, shouldn’t forget that even minor wet sluffing and shallow wind drifts knocking you off your feet can have disastrous consequences. 

It’s still not out of the realm of possibility of triggering a slide on the weak, sugary facets near the ground.  The most likely place a person would trigger one of these deeper slides would be on a steep northwest through east facing slope above about 9000 feet.  Likely trigger points would be steep shallow rocky areas. 

Bottom Line:
While most slopes have a LOW avalanche danger today, a MODERATE danger remains on steep shady upper elevation slopes that have a thin snowpack.  With daytime heating, it may be possible to trigger a few wet sluffs today.

Mountain Weather (updated by noon daily): 
We’ll see sunny skies with daytime highs in the mid to upper 30’s at 8000’ and near freezing at 10,000’.  Winds will be light from the northwest.  A quick moving storm is forecast to move through on Tuesday that should give us another shot of snow.


Regional Snow Profile (this profile can also be found daily off our home page under avalanche products)

Seasonal Weather History Charts.

Please report any backcountry snow and avalanche conditions you observe.  Call (801) 524-5304 or 1-800-662-4140, email [email protected] or fax 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.

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.)

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

I will update this advisory by 7:30 Monday morning.  Thanks for calling.