The Utah Avalanche Center warns the backcountry may need a day or two to stabilize
Fresh snow and snowdrift pose significant dangers on the upper slopes in the backcountry.
The number of avalanches reported from Ogden to Provo over the weekend is approaching 30 and more reports are pouring in. The fresh snow and windblown snow create a significant hazard on the slopes of the upper backcountry elevations.
The Utah Avalanche Center was inundated with reports this weekend.
Forecaster Trent Meisenheimer said six people were caught in several different avalanches and another person was trapped and injured in Big Cottonwood Canyon in an area known as Butler’s Basin.
He said the group had skied through the bowl before and went about 10 feet higher on the second climb. One of the skiers stomped on a flat spot to pull his skins off, apparently resulting in the bowl breaking above them. He was pushed a few meters to the side of the avalanche, but his buddy still had his skis and skins on in hike mode. The chute pushed him into a stand of trees and buried him up to his chest. He reported that he also heard and felt his hamstring pop. His partner was able to dig him out and free his skis.
“The list of our avalanche observations is actually too long to write them down in avalanche forecasts,” said Meisenheimer. “So I would encourage listeners to go to utahavalanchecenter.org. At the top of our site you can see observations and avalanches and there is a huge list of these images, photos, everything in there. The biggest worry of the day is really going to be that one blowing snow.”
Visit KPCW.org for more information.
This article is published by the Utah News Collaborative, a partnership of Utah news organizations dedicated to educating readers across the state.
https://www.sltrib.com/news/2023/01/31/utah-avalanche-center-warns/ The Utah Avalanche Center warns the backcountry may need a day or two to stabilize