Avalanche Advisory
Advisory: Salt Lake Area Mountains Issued by Brett Kobernik for Monday - February 2, 2015 - 7:06am
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Most terrain has a LOW avalanche danger today. Watch for "pockety" wind slabs along the mid and upper elevation ridges especially on the easterly facing terrain and consider consequences if you're in radical terrain. Continue to prod and jump on any fresh drifts in safe terrain to get a feel of how sensitive they are.

current conditions

Weather and snow over the weekend felt more like April to me than early February. Saturday brought a few inches of new snow which was damp at lower elevations but held 'powder like' conditions on the upper elevation northerly slopes. With the very mild temperatures, the lower elevation snowpack was completely saturated below around 7500 feet and many slopes became wet during the day. Skies cleared out Saturday night with a good solid refreeze and we were left with lots of crusts which didn't soften all that much on Sunday.

The 3 inches or so from Saturday is still powdery on the northerly facing terrain. That snow sits on various sun and wind crusts and a few spots of dense near surface facets. These hidden crusts are somewhat unpredictable while riding. I did note a few plumes coming off the peaks from the north Sunday morning.

Temperatures overnight were in the low to mid 20s and west northwest winds increased in speed along the mid elevations for a period and appear to be slowing again. The highest most exposed terrain continues to see somewhat breezy conditions with averages in the 30s. 1 to 2 inches of snow fell overnight and it's currently snowing lightly.

Avalanche Problem 1
type aspect/elevation characteristics
over the next 24 hours

Minor wind slabs along the lee sides of the ridges will be the only thing you'll really need to watch for today. These should be fairly "pockety" in distribution and shouldn't be all that big. I'm thinking they won't pose a huge threat unless you are in steep, exposed, radical terrain. Watch for cracking as you travel which would indicate these fresh drifts may be sensitive.


We're going to see cloudy skies with periods of snow over the next couple of days. This actually could add up to a nice little refresher by the time it's all said and done on Wednesday. We're only anticipating a trace to a few inches today. Ridgetop temperatures will be in the mid to upper 20s and winds will be in the moderate speed range from the west northwest. Expect slightly stronger and more steady winds along the highest terrain.

general announcements

Remember your information can save lives. If you see anything we should know about, please participate in the creation of our own community avalanche advisory by submitting snow and avalanche conditions. You can also call us at 801-524-5304, email by clicking HERE, or include #utavy in your tweet or Instagram.

If you trigger an avalanche in the backcountry - especially if you are adjacent to a ski area – please call the following teams to alert them to the slide and whether anyone is missing or not. Rescue teams can be exposed to significant hazard when responding to avalanches, and do not want to do so when unneeded. Thanks.

Salt Lake and Park City – Alta Central (801-742-2033), Canyons Resort Dispatch (435-615-3322)

Snowbasin Resort Dispatch (801-620-1017), Powder Mountain Dispatch (801-745-3772 x 123).

Sundance Dispatch (801-223-4150)

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DAWN PATROL Hotline updated daily by 5-530am - 888-999-4019 option 8.

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UDOT canyon closures:  LINK TO UDOT, or on Twitter, follow @UDOTavy, @CanyonAlerts or @AltaCentral

Utah Avalanche Center mobile app - Get your advisory on your iPhone along with great navigation and rescue tools.

Wasatch Powderbird Guides Blog/Itinerary for the Day.  

Lost or Found something in the backcountry? - http://nolofo.com/

Ski Utah mobile snow updates

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To those skinning uphill at resorts:  it is your responsibility to know the resort policy on uphill travel.  You can see the uphill travel policy for each resort here. IMPORTANT: Before skinning or hiking at a resort under new snow conditions, check in with Ski Patrol.  Resorts can restrict or cut off access if incompatible with control and grooming operations.

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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 exist.