Poet Carl Sandburg wrote that “fog comes on little cat feet ... looking over harbor and city on silent haunches and then moves on.”
Fog — freezing fog — there was for northern Utah’s Wasatch Front Monday morning, but you might hear Sandburg’s metaphorical feline hacking up a lung before you saw him: the region’s air quality was, again, downright unhealthy.
For both Monday and Tuesday, the Utah Division of Air Quality gave its dire “Red” air alert grades to Salt Lake, Davis, Utah, Weber, Cache and Box Elder counties. “Red” alerts carry restrictions on wood-burning stoves, advisories to motorists to avoid driving or to take mass transit, and warnings that prolonged outdoor activity poses hazards to the old, very young and those with cardiac or lung ailments.
Duchesne, Tooele and Uintah counties, meanwhile, earned “Yellow,” or compromised air quality ratings both days.
The Wasatch Front expected a return of the freezing morning fog Tuesday with daytime highs in the low-30s, mirroring Monday’s forecast.
Southern Utahns, though, had none of that. They expected sunny days with highs in the low-60s both days.
The Utah Avalanche Center cautioned backcountry recreationists that the risk for potentially deadly snowslides remained a concern. Avalanche risks were rated at “considerable” for the mountains of Logan, Ogden, Salt Lake City, Provo and the Uintas, while the Skyline and Moab district slopes earned “moderate” grades.
Salt Lake City was pegged for highs of 32 and 35 degrees Monday and Tuesday; Ogden looked for 30 and 33 degrees, respectively; Provo 34 and 36; Logan 23 and 29; Wendover 28 and 30; Duchesne 23 and 24; Cedar City 46 and 50; St. George 62 and 63; and Moab 43 and 47 degrees.