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.



Monday, February 20, 20067:30am
Good morning, this is Bruce Tremper with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.Today is Monday, February 20, 2006, and itís about 7:30 am.


A long time fundraiser for the Utah Avalanche Center, the Banff Mountain Film Festival is coming back to town tomorrow night, February 21st and 22nd at Kingsbury Hall.You can get tickets at Kingsbury Hall, Art-Tix, the Outdoor Rec Program at the U and REI.For more info, call 581-8516.


Current Conditions:

The winter of 06 continues its march into the history book of legendary winters.Backcountry riding conditions are excellent, once again, with up to a foot of cold, light powder on a mostly stable foundation.To be fair, there are some niggling complaints about feeling the various crusts underneath but nothing that a month in Oregon wonít cure. There was also just a slight sun crust on south facing slopes yesterday. Temperatures are colder than yesterday with most of the automated mountain weather stations hovering around zero, so bring a down coat, warm mittens and a face mask or visor.


Avalanche Conditions:

Although the snow remains mostly stable in all areas, yesterday a couple skiers were able to pop out some relatively small wind slabs on steep slopes about a foot deep and 30 feet wide.One was on Miller Hill, south of Snowbird on a steep, shallow, rocky, north-facing slope.There were two others that a skier was able to intentionally ski cut on Mt. Timpanogos in the Sundance backcountry on steep, wind drifted slopes (PHOTOS). Also, you can still feel some slabby, punchy snow under the new snow where an old wind slab sits on some small-grained faceted snow.Most of these seem content to stay in place, but there may be a few places where you could pop one of these out.So continue to practice slope cuts and go one at a time. Finally, the snow does sluff fairly easily on steep slopes but they are mostly very soft and easy to manage. If the sun does come out today, it should produces some localized, small sluffs on south facing slopes as they heat up in the sun.


Bottom Line:

The avalanche danger is mostly LOW with pockets of MODERATE danger, mostly on slopes steeper then 35 degrees with recent deposits of wind drifted snow.


Mountain Weather:

We will have very cold temperatures today, starting out around zero and rising to about 8 degrees on the ridge tops and into the mid teens down at 8,000í.Ridge top winds will remain fairly light, around 10 mph from the west and northwest.Thereís a still lot of low level moisture with just enough westerly winds to stack it up against the mountains.This should produce very light snow showers and variable low-level clouds through much of the day but you will also see the sun poke through quite a bit as well, especially at higher elevations.


The extended forecast calls for continued cold with light winds for the next couple days and slowly warming by mid week.We donít see any significant snow for the next week or so.



Click here to check out our new online avalanche encyclopedia.


Early birds and snow geeks can catch our 6AM report at 364-1591.

Click HERE for a text only version of the avalanche advisory.

To have this advisory automatically e-mailed to you each day, click HERE.

UDOT also has a highway avalanche control work hotline for Big Cottonwood, Little Cottonwood, and Provo canyons, which is updated as needed. 801-975-4838.

Wasatch Powderbirds did not get out yesterday and if they can fly today, they will be in American Fork, White Pine and the Sessions.For more info, call 742-2800.

Please report any backcountry snow and avalanche conditions.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.

Drew Hardesty will update this advisory by 7:30 Tuesday morning.Thanks for calling.