Salt Lake Avalanche Advisory

Forecaster: Evelyn Lees


Alta is now closed to uphill traffic as they begin their setup and snow safety operations for the season. However, access to Catherine's pass via the Albion summer road is appropriate.


Danger by aspect and elevation on slopes approaching 35° or steeper.
(click HERE for tomorrow's danger rating)

Danger Rose Tutorial

The avalanche danger is MODERATE on steep slopes with recent drifts of wind blown snow. These drifts will be most widespread and sensitive along ridge lines above about 10,000'. The snow at the mid and low elevations will become wet and sloppy again today, with wet loose sluffs possible.


Under partly cloudy skies, temperatures have struggled to cool overnight, and are in the mid 30's at 8,500', and the upper 20's at 10,000'. Wind direction varies from southwest to northwest, and speeds are generally less than 15 mph. Only the highest peaks and ridge lines are getting the strong, 40 mph plus speeds. Yesterday's “snow” event wound down by evening, with 1 to 4” of 10 to 20% density snow falling at the mid to high elevations.

It will be a very crusty morning, following yesterday's combination of rain at the mid elevations and a goggle scrapping rime/icing event above about 9,400'. The mid elevations will have the thicker, more challenging crusts this morning, hopefully softening to mashed potatoes as the day warms. At the higher elevations, it may be possible to have fun blasting through the thinner crusts.


One small avalanche was triggered with a ski cut yesterday, at 10,000' on an ESE facing slope in upper Little Cottonwood. The slide was 2-8” deep, releasing the new dense snow where it was poorly bonded to the old snow below. No other avalanche activity was reported.


      Over the next 24 hours.

The moderate to strong west to northwesterly winds will continue to blow across the higher ridges and peaks, so fresh wind drifts will once again be the main avalanche concern. Watch out for and avoid any rounded pillows or waves of snow on steep slopes. The drifts may be right along the ridges, or slightly down slope. Warm temperatures may make some of these drifts stubborn, and they could break out above you. Even a short ride could smash you into the barely covered rocks.


      Over the next 24 hours.

Another round of warm temperatures and rain possibly as high as 9,000' will heat the snow surface, making it possible to trigger wet loose sluffs on steep mid elevation slopes. While these sluffs will be shallow, they can push you around and the debris could be surprisingly deep if it piles up in a gully. Also watch out for roofs releasing their snow load.


A moist, northwesterly flow will push a cold front across the area midday. Increasing clouds this morning, with light snow possible as the front arrives. Gradually cooling temperatures will lower the rain/snow line from about 9,000' today down to about 7,500' by this evening. Limited moisture, weak dynamics and warm temperatures will cap snow amounts at a few inches. The northwesterly winds are forecast to increase today, into the 20 to 30 mph range, with speeds across the highest terrain averaging closer to 50 mph. A broad ridge of high pressure will build into the area Friday, and continue through early next week.


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).

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 visitour Friends page.

If you’re getting out and see anything we should know about please let us know. You can leave a message at (801) 524-5304 or 1-800-662-4140, or email us at (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. Bruce Tremper will update this advisory by 7:30 on Friday morning.

This information does not apply to developed ski areas or highways where avalanche control is normally done.  This advisory is from the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, which is solely responsible for its content. This advisory describes general avalanche conditions and local variations always occur.

This advisory provided by the USDA Forest Service, in partnership with:

The Friends of the Utah Avalanche Center, Utah Division of State Parks and Recreation, Utah Division of Emergency Management, Salt Lake County, Salt Lake Unified Fire Authority and the friends of the La Sal Avalanche Center. See our Sponsors Page for a complete list.