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.

ďkeeping you on topĒ


Monday, April 07, 20087:30 am
Good morning, this is Bruce Tremper with the Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center with your backcountry avalanche and mountain weather advisory.Today is Monday, April 07, 2008 and itís about 7:30 am.


Current Conditions:

For those folks who just couldnít get enough powder this winter, today should finally make you old sourpusses crack a smile.With just a couple inches so far this morning, Iím expecting about a foot of snow today with 15-20 mph ridge top winds from the northwest and ridge top temperatures in the mid teens.In other words, today should be a good call-in-sick-for-work day if you donít mind a little, pesky, poor visibility.The new snow is falling on a variety of old, snow surfaces including slick, hard, sun crusts on most aspects, soft, mildly recrystallized snow on straight north facing slopes and damp, mushy, supportable, corn snow at lower elevations. ††


Snow and Avalanche Discussion:

The only avalanche activity reported yesterday was some skiers high in White Pine just west of Snowbird who found a couple small, shallow, wind slabs along the upper elevation ridges.(Thanks to Chad Blackelsberg for sending photos.)

Today, of course, the main news is the new snow, which should pile up to about a foot by the end of the day.The good news is that the wind is not forecasted to be too strongó15-20 mph from the northwestóso the new snow should remain manageable.Youíve gotta love these spring snow storms because thereís no hidden agendasóeverything is what-you-see-is-what-you-get.Most avalanches today will likely be soft and sensitive and the instability will increase throughout the day.Just use your usual bag of tricks with new snow instabilities such as jumping on small, test slopes, do slope cuts, dig down with your hand and cut out a small block of snow and pull on it to see how well itís bonded and keep a sharp eye out for the telltale, smooth, rounded shape and slabby feel of recent wind drifts.The new snow should slide easily on some old, slick, sun crusts and some of the soft, recrystallized snow on the north facing slopes.Remember that the snow behavior will likely change dramatically between aspects and you will likely find soft, wind slabs especially along the upper elevation ridges. Also, remember that the faceted snow on the north facing slopes will likely continue to produce avalanches tomorrow and the next day after the other slopes have stabilized.


Finally, Iím not expecting much sun today, but in case Iím wrong, you can expect the new snow to sluff easily when the strong, spring sun hits it.


Bottom Line for the Salt Lake, Park City, Provo and Ogden area mountains:

The avalanche danger will increase to a MODERATE danger of human triggered avalanches on most slopes. ††There will likely be pockets of CONSIDERABLE danger along upper elevation ridges where the wind has drifted snow into drifts deeper than a couple feet deep.The danger will increase throughout the day.

Mountain Weather:

Snow should continue throughout the day with a foot of snow in most, upper elevation terrain favored by a northwest flow, such as the Cottonwood Canyons.Ridge top winds should blow 15-20 mph from the northwest with ridge top temperatures in the mid teens.We should get a break in the action overnight with more light snow showers again on Tuesday and continued unsettled, cloudy weather most of the week and a nice weekend.


The Wasatch Powderbird Guides didnít get out yesterday and they will most likely not fly today.For more detailed information please call (801) 742-2800 or go to their daily blog.

If you want to get this avalanche advisory e-mailed to you daily click HERE.
UDOT highway avalanche control work info can be found by calling
(801) 975-4838.
Our statewide tollfree line is 1-888-999-4019 (early morning, option 8).

Watch video tututorials and fieldwork from UAC staff at our YouTube channel.

The UAC depends on contributions from users like you to support our work.  To find out more about how you can support our efforts to continue providing the avalanche forecasting and education that you expect please visit our Friends page.

If you see any avalanches or interesting snow conditions, please leave us a message at
(801) 524-5304 or 1-800-662-4140, or email us at [email protected]. (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 Tuesday morning.