2 Avalanches Strike Alta, UT

2 Avalanches Strike Alta, UT

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2 Avalanches Strike Alta, UT

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It is already avalanche season in the Wasatch Range. Two skier triggered avalanches have been reported on Utah Avalanche Center Website

Utah Avalanche Center Website

Location: Collins Gulch, UT

Location Name or Route:
Baldy Shoulder
Elevation: 10100
Aspect: North
Trigger: Skier
Avalanche Type: Soft Slab
Depth: 10″
Width: 60
Vertical: 300
Comments: Two slides are visible from the road through the Town of Alta on Baldy shoulder. One slide is in “the armpit,” and the other in “Bounous’ Chute.” Dimensions are tough to estimate from the road but they look like they’re each ~60 wide, and most likely failed on the extremely weak, 2-3mm facets present on high north prior to yesterday’s graupel and last night’s medium density snow. The slides are likely ~10 inches deep, given a storm total of ten inches at the nearby collins study plot. From the road, it is not possible to tell whether there are any tracks into, out of, or anywhere near the slides, although there are people skiing around at Alta today.

Forecaster Note: While the weak layer of these slides cannot be determined with 100% accuracy by viewing them from a distance, a faceted weak layer is a distinct possibility.  Below is a photo from Sunday’s Observation which shows that the starting zones of these avalanches had snow cover prior to the storm.  Being that almost all of the snow on the northerly aspects that I’ve looked at is faceted, it is quite likely that these failed on a faceted weak layer.  This is very pertinent information given our current situation and we will work on confirming this.

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Keep Reading Here: Utah Avalanche Center Website

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