Avalanches Starting Early In The Wasatch



Leave it to anxious early season skiers to set off an avalanche on slopes with only 20″ of snow. It’s an annual rite of ski passage to hike the face of Alta Ski Resort before the lifts spin. Well, today four slides have set the wheels of safety in motion. Alta is out for uphill traffic. They had planned to close tonight to prep for the November 18 opening but what’s a few extra hours early if it means lives saved.

There’s a weak October snow layer beneath this weekend’s heavy new snow. Guess what that means?

The unstable snowpack made for treacherous skiing Sunday afternoon. One person is already in the ER with a busted leg. People, it’s too early to redshirt yourselves. The Utah Avalanche Center has reported at least four rips; three definitely human-triggered, and the fourth one is probably one as well. All four were at the as-yet closed Alta Ski Resort. Therefore, you could say the avis were in the backcountry.

It’s snowing in PC (3pm, Sunday) but the forecast for the rest of the week looks like partly cloudy skies and warm temps. Weatherbug says that we’ve got about 70 percent chance for more snow by the weekend. Please be safe out there. The snowpack is funky, the coverage thin and honestly consider whether it’s worth the risk for those few early season turns. You can’t just think that because you’re skiing at a (closed) resort that the skiing is safe. Check in with the UAC at www.utahavalanchecenter.org or call 888-999-4019.



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