NOAA has issued an Avalanche Warning in Utah today after 12″+ of snow has fallen in the Wasatch mountains of Utah. The Alta-Collins weather station was showing 16″ of new snow as of this morning at 8am.
“Avalanche Warning issued last night. 16″ of dense snow overnight. Large, dangerous avalanches likely including at closed ski resorts. Please help spread the word. Stay off of, and out from underneath, any steep slope.” – Utah Avalanche Center facebook page
This new snow is dense and heavy creating the potential for dangerous avalanche conditions.
The Utah Avalanche Center closed down a month earlier than normal this year on March 31st due to low snowfall this winter. This is ironic because the largest storm of the year occurred in April this year and May has been abnormally snowy. Since they are closed, we have no official danger rating for the current conditions.
Lets all think of the avalanche danger rating as HIGH and be extra careful in the Utah backcountry this week.
NOAA’S “Avalanche Warning” for Utah:
URGENT - IMMEDIATE BROADCAST REQUESTED BACKCOUNTRY AVALANCHE WARNING FOREST SERVICE UTAH AVALANCHE CENTER RELAYED BY NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SALT LAKE CITY UTAH 326 AM MDT SUN MAY 17 2015 THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE IS TRANSMITTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE FOREST SERVICE UTAH AVALANCHE CENTER. AN AVALANCHE WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR THE WASATCH MOUNTAIN RANGE OF NORTHERN UTAH. A FOOT OR MORE OF HEAVY DENSE SNOW ABOVE 8000 FEET HAS CREATED THE POTENTIAL FOR BOTH NATURAL AND HUMAN TRIGGERED AVALANCHES. REMEMBER SKI RESORTS ARE CLOSED FOR THE SEASON AND NOT DOING ANY AVALANCHE CONTROL. PEOPLE SHOULD STAY OFF OF AND OUT FROM UNDERNEATH STEEP SLOPES.