Avalanche danger in Utah’s backcounty likely to rise to extreme

Photo Courtesy: Salt Lake County Emergency Management

UTAH, Feb. 15, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — Avalanche danger in Utah’s backcountry is high and likely to rise to extreme, officials said Monday.

A news release from Utah Avalanche Center said: “Very dangerous avalanche conditions exist, and deadly avalanches are likely in the Utah backcountry over the next few days. Heavy snowfall and drifting from a significant and prolonged winter storm will continue to overload an exceptionally weak snowpack.”

Extreme avalanche danger means:

  • It is the highest level of avalanche danger
  • Avalanches are certain to occur
  • Avalanches may run historic distances
  • Avalanches will be fast-moving, far-running and very destructive
  • Avalanches may reach or occur in places not normally affected

“Routes you have used successfully for years may not be so safe now, and everyone should reassess travel routes and take extraordinary precautions,” the news release said. “Many places may be unsafe due to long-running natural avalanches including examples such as areas near Aspen Grove, the hike to Donut Falls, the Wood Camp area in Logan Canyon and many others.”

The news release said that if residents choose to go into the backcountry, they should:

  • Use extreme caution
  • Expect unstable snow conditions, even where avalanches are unexpected.
  • Choose safe routes in low angled terrain well out from under and not connected to slopes steeper than about 30 degrees.
  • Avoid travel in all avalanche terrain

For more information visit UtahAvalancheCenter.org.


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