Experts Warn Of High Avalanche Danger In All Utah Mountains

Mar 8, 2019, 6:11 PM | Updated: 6:18 pm

COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah — Avalanche danger remains high in all of Utah’s mountains today with even as more new snow piles up.

The Wasatch Mountains added as much as two feet of snow over the last couple of days with another foot falling today.

Avalanche forecasters alert skiers and snowmobilers to be patient and cautious in the back-country this weekend.

While it was raining in the valleys, the mountains this week picked up a foot and a half to two feet of snow.

With more fresh snow falling, we can expect another busy weekend for skiers and snowmobilers.

“Avalanche avoidance is always the ticket” said Craig Gordon, an avalanche forecaster with the US Forest Service Utah Avalanche Center. “But, we’re humans. We make mistakes.”

Back-country riders need proper gear and training, he said.

“If you’re heading out into the backcountry, you need to go out with experienced partners,” said Gordon. “You need to have at a basic minimum: avalanche shovels, beacons, probes. It’s got to be on our body. And, we’ve got a know how to use that gear.”

This weekend, Gordon said, back-country snowmobilers and skiers need to be patient and let the new snow settle.

“No area here in Utah is immune to avalanche problems right now,” he said.

Avoid steep, upper elevation, wind-drifted terrain.

“Our snow pack is finally starting to turn the corner in many areas,” said the avalanche forecaster. “Still though, there are some zones where the snow pack is suspect.”

Gordon says you can still ride low-angled slopes and enjoy the light, fluffy snow that is falling on top, now that the colder air has arrived.

“The problem is, it came in dense. It came in heavy,” he said. “Lots of wind drifts across the leeward side of the upper elevations and now we’re putting a light fluffy snow on top. This is the stuff that makes our license plates famous.”

As the weekend progresses, Gordon advises back-country skiers and snowmobilers to keep up with the avalanche advisories from the Utah Avalanche Center if you’re headed into the backcountry.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Debbie Worthen

Family, friends remember Utah Tech freshman as ‘the life of the party’

Family and friends of a Utah Tech University student who fell from a fifth story balcony over the weekend remember the 18-year-old as “the life of the party.”
1 day ago
With only days to go before Christmas retailers are hoping consumers will shop generously. (Photo b...
Matt Gephardt and Sloan Schrage, KSL TV

Gephardt Busts Inflation: The tricks retailers will use to get us to open up our wallets

Of the thousands of Utahns who shopped for bargains on Black Friday, many likely bought a lot of stuff they really didn't plan to buy. And as KSL's Matt Gephardt explains, that's all by design.
1 day ago
KSL TV's Daniella Rivera (left) and Unified police detective Doug Lambert (right)....
Daniella Rivera and Annie Knox, KSL TV

The gift you shouldn’t give car burglars this holiday season

Holiday shoppers are darting around busy parking lots this time of year. So are thieves. Unified police told the KSL Investigators there's a new number one hot spot for car prowlers, but some simple steps can make sure they don't get the better of you.
1 day ago
(Jordan Education Foundation)...
Dan Rascon

Volunteers desperately needed to take kids in need Christmas shopping

A major Christmas giving event to help students in need in South Jordan is in “need” itself.
1 day ago
Lauren Steinbrecher

Hunter High shooter gets juvenile detention for killing 2 students; case now closed

The teen who shot and killed two Hunter High students and injured a third nearly a year ago was sentenced Monday to serve in juvenile detention until he’s 21.
1 day ago
Home security footage of the suspected driver crashing into a mailbox....
Shara Park

Syracuse residents search for driver who destroyed mailboxes overnight

Syracuse families are looking for answers after someone drove through their yards Monday morning, destroying property and mailboxes.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Experts Warn Of High Avalanche Danger In All Utah Mountains