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.

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Tuesday, December 05, 2006  7:30 am
Good morning, this is Brett Kobernik with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.  Today is Tuesday, December 05, 2006 and it’s 7:30 in the morning. 


Current Conditions:

Currently, skies are mostly clear.  Ridgetop temperatures are in the mid 20s with slightly lower readings in the valley bottoms.  Ridgetop winds are 5 to 10 mph gusting into the 20s.


Snowpack and Avalanche Conditions:

The powder is getting louder.  This is a result of near surface faceting and surface hoar formation.  In simple terms, the surface snow continues to weaken.  This is not an issue at this time but is something we will pay close attention to if it ever gets covered up with new snow.  In general, the snowpack is still fairly supportable especially in areas where the overall depth is 3 to 4 feet.  In areas that have less, things are significantly weaker.  I’ve been finding areas where my skis penetrate through the most recent layer into weak snow near the ground.  These areas will need to be treated with much respect once we start loading them with more snow.  (CLICK FOR DIAGRAM)


For today the main concern will be any new wind deposited snow.  Wind speeds are forecast to pick up slightly today but this will mainly affect only the higher locations.  Nonetheless, pay attention to any fresh drifting.  With plenty of weak snow around, any new drift on top is suspect. 


Bottom Line:

The avalanche danger is mostly LOW today.  The slight increase in wind speeds does deserve a “pockety” MODERATE rating in areas with recent deposits of wind drifted snow.  This will be mostly on easterly facing slopes at the higher elevations.


Mountain Weather:

A slight disturbance to our north will produce partly cloudy skies in our area.  Northwest wind speeds in the 10 to 20 mph range will increase slightly and may reach 50 mph at the most exposed locations.  Ridgetop temperatures will be in the upper 20s.  An upper level ridge will be over us Thursday and Friday resulting in clear skies with mild temperatures in the mountains.  The weekend brings a change but currently the storms don’t look real good for much snow in northern Utah.



Our partners, the FUAC, will hold their next fundraiser at Brewvies on Dec 7th. There will be two showings of TGR’s new film, “The Anomaly”, at 7pm and 9pm.  Advance tickets are available.


We appreciate any snowpack and avalanche observations you have, so please let us know by calling (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.


Evelyn Lees will update this advisory by 7:30 on Wednesday morning and thanks for calling.