We certainly woke up to a surprise this morning! This sleeper storm really delivered the goods. Moab is covered in a blanket of white fluffy goodness, It’s quite an amazing sight!
We saw 1” of snow at Willow Springs, 8” of snow at Bridger Jack Mesa and up to 23” in the La Sals overnight. The above photo was taken near Lions Park this morning. So exciting! I pulled out my probe this afternoon while skiing above the Geyser Pass turnoff and measured 60 centimeters, or 23” of snow overnight. The Ski Season has begun, get stoked!
Geyser Pass Rd. 11/26/19
The La Sal Loop Road is plowed, at least to the Geyser Pass turnoff. Several plows passed me this morning while I was getting all my gear together at the Geyser Pass turnoff, so I would imagine it’s plowed much further than that. The Geyser Pass Rd is completely unplowed. However, we have heard that it will be plowed tomorrow. If so, we will have access to 2+ feet of fresh fluffy powder. It’s gonna be really good up there! Just be careful of hidden obstacles. There are sharks in the water! Don’t acquire a season-ending injury this early. That would be a bummer. We have not gotten word when grooming will begin, but the equipment is stashed and ready to go.
Skinning up Geyser Pass Rd.
The Utah Avalanche Center released an avalanche forecast for the La Sal’s this morning. Please check out the Moab Avalanche Conditions page for a full update on the avalanche conditions. We are currently seeing MODERATE avalanche danger above 11,000 feet on Northerly facing aspects and LOW avalanche danger on Southerly facing aspects above 11,000 feet. There is a LOW avalanche danger rating on all aspects below 10,000 feet. The main dangers are wind-loaded slopes on northerly aspects, and storm slab loading of old snow on northerly aspects. It would have been a very long day to get anywhere near the danger zone as the Geyser Pass Rd was unplowed, but tomorrow has great potential for epic skiing! Nordic skiing is prime, as long as you don’t need grooming!
Geyser Pass Rd.
We have much more where that came from! The Thanksgiving Holiday will see another significant winter storm with more snow to unload upon us. It looks rather wet from Wednesday night into Friday night. Here’s the forecast.
We will be OPEN on Thanksgiving day from 8 AM to 9 PM. We are taking nordic skis, alpine touring skis, snowboards, snowshoes, and most other gear that gets you outside this winter. Stop by anytime to see our traction devices, ski, and snowboard wax and tuning supplies, and a large selection of winter apparel. Shop now for the best selection and prices. Please refer to moabgeartrader.com/sell for information on consigning your winter gear!
Utah ski resorts saw anywhere from 10” at Alta to 16” at Brian Head. Brian Head has been killing it so far! However, The La Sal’s were the winners this time around. Colorado resorts saw anywhere from 1” at Loveland, Keystone, and Winter Park and up to 12-18” in Rocky Mountain National Park. Telluride and Eldora were the Colorado ski resort winners with 10” of fresh. What a great start to the season!
The forecast for the Thanksgiving Holiday is looking really good for Utah and Colorado resorts. There will be a very intense low-pressure system moving through the Utah and Colorado mountains that will deliver a significant amount of snowfall. We should see anywhere from 27”-47” of new snow for Utah resorts, and anywhere from 10’-37” for Colorado resorts. Alta and Wolf Creek are the projected winners for this storm. It might be worth it to sneak away from the family for a little while this Thanksgiving! Here’s the OpenSnow forecast for the next 5 days.
As the freshly fallen snow has blanketed the region, it’s safe to say climbing will be a no go for the foreseeable future. Do not climb on wet sandstone. Sandstone becomes incredibly weak when introduced to significant moisture. Climbing on it damages the rock irreversibly and threatens your own life. Cam’s slide out on wet sandstone. If you plan to come to the Moab area this week to go rock climbing, maybe consider going skiing instead. It’s going to be much safer and more fun. The rule of thumb is three days of direct sunshine after a significant moisture event. The snow will take more than 3 days to dry completely and the lingering moisture may still permeate the sandstone when it is gone. If there is snow at the base or at the top of a route, do not climb. If the base of the route is muddy or moist, do not climb. The soil at the base of the route should be completely dry, it should kick up dust, and the layer below that dust should be dry as well. Please help preserve the world-class rock climbing by not ruining the stone when it’s wet.
Most of the mountain biking trails in Moab are closed due to wet and muddy conditions. Porcupine Rim, Slickrock, Amasa/Cpt. Ahab, Rockstacker, Jackson, Navajo Rocks and Poison Spider are the only open trails. Please stay off of closed trails during wet and muddy conditions. It only takes a couple of riders to leave deep ruts that are very hard to repair. The wet conditions may also destroy derailleurs and damage drivetrains. It would be a better idea to go skiing this week. Please refer to the Poison Spider Conditions Report for current trail conditions.
Author Paul Magnanti will be hosting a presentation at the Grand County Public Library titled “How To Survive Your First Trip In The Wild: Backpacking for Beginners” on December 3rd from 6-9 PM
Sorrel River Ranch will be hosting a Thanksgiving celebration on November 27th-December 1st.
Moab Giants is hosting the first annual Holiday Craft Event on November 29th from 10AM to 4PM.