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Avalanche Awareness

FBGM

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I know I bash on east coast resorts, Vail resorts (like we all do) and am a smart ass prick. But the Utah Avalanche Center does accident reports better then almost anywhere in the world. Lots of you guys travel out west (where I’m at) and I’m sure have thought about ducking a rope or hiking side country or back country. Read this report and watch this video.

If this stuff can save 1 life or have 1 group make a good decision it’s worth it. Even back east there is a handful of areas that could get you in trouble. 5 min read and video does nothing but give knowledge and share experiences. This one is pretty sobering. Mistakes were made and arguments can be had. End result is the same.

Get out there and ski and have fun and enjoy snow like we are all here for. Do it safe to do it another day.
 

jimk

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Good post.
Pretty interesting podcast here on avalanche safety with riveting testimony from a guy who survived 70 minutes under six feet of snow last year at the Silver Mtn slide. Good stuff starts at about 4 minutes and gets emotional:
 

drjeff

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Agree 100%

The Utah avalanche crew is on par with the post mortem reports that the crew on Mount Washington puts out after an event..

So much good info to learn from the great info those 2 avi reporting services put out there.. Too bad that so many dumb asses
 

jimmywilson69

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Well that is very detailed and informative. Also just silly that these guys went out there with the risk so high. just goes to show you that even with experience, any decision can be fata.

thanks for the info.
 

kingslug

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I highly recommend anyone thinking of going into these area to take a level 1 avi course..its 3 days..and depending on where you do it..pretty hard. I did it at Alta and skinning to the top and digging pits..the altitude got me but i made it. And learned a hell of a lot. Best 220.00 i spent.
Even when your with a guide..they aren't faultless. If you feel things aren't right, they will listen. I've survived 20 years out in that stuff.
 

FBGM

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This is a bad one. Bad year for CO. Big slide, huge terrain trap. Worst fatality avalanche since the Loveland Pass incident. Well known guys in the community it seems.
 

kingslug

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Crazy thing is a lot of very experienced people get killed in avis..because they are the only ones out there risking it. They have all the skills..but the snow could care less.
I mean..it avalanched at Belleayre...it can avi anywhere at any time. I had just a little snow start running under me at Tux and it knocked me down. Freaky.
 

1dog

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I highly recommend anyone thinking of going into these area to take a level 1 avi course..its 3 days..and depending on where you do it..pretty hard. I did it at Alta and skinning to the top and digging pits..the altitude got me but i made it. And learned a hell of a lot. Best 220.00 i spent.
Even when your with a guide..they aren't faultless. If you feel things aren't right, they will listen. I've survived 20 years out in that stuff.
Skinned Superior about 6 years ago - got no sleep night before, left at 3 AM, altitude got to me, made it 500 ' below summit, called it and skied down, knee to thigh deep- fab run. Disappointed I didn't make that last 45 min to summit - until walked by Peruvian desk clerk ' how's your day? Great! Just got off Superior!' She says ' ooooh! You're lucky, summit portion just slid! two guys caught - they found them, they're ok.' 45 minutes after we got down.

Missed a bullet.

Skied Ammo just after that HUGE slide in 2010 - best runs in the Presidentials ever. but the power of that slide looked like loggers had been up there to cut trees it was so intense. Snapped 'em like toothpicks.
Gotta take one of those classes. We never go without 2 or 3 but, only by grace of the Lord have we not gotten in trouble. . . yet.
 

jimk

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Crazy thing is a lot of very experienced people get killed in avis..because they are the only ones out there risking it. They have all the skills..but the snow could care less.
I mean..it avalanched at Belleayre...it can avi anywhere at any time. I had just a little snow start running under me at Tux and it knocked me down. Freaky.
Dan Egan, from January 2021 about backcountry skiing and avalanches, "the more you know, the more danger you are in."
 

ss20

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I don't know much about avalanches, but this heavy snow layer from this most recent storm could potentially be problematic for us here on the East Coast further down the road, correct?

Another nickle/dime storm Friday/Saturday....2"-5". Monday could be another big southern storm for the Flatlanders.
 

kingslug

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The worst case is when a new layer doesn't bond with the layer below. Here we get ice layers which the new snow just sits on waiting to go.
Worst I've ever seen and skied. St Anton. 2 days of solid rain..overnight freeze..then 3 feet plus on top. The whole place avalanched..then we went skiing with guides. Scary as you hit that layer in certain areas no matter how deep it was. You can't go out if its all class 4. The stuff on the top of the peaks was a 4, but we were in class 3 which while scary is manageable with a good guide. These guys has 30 to 40 years experience. Crossing these huge slide paths sux..frozen boulders.
 

kingslug

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Zermatt..2 groups..we hire guides. The other group were pretty much blue cruiser type. Waiting for them in a restaurant with great views of a huge peak. The whole peak comes down..The group comes in covered in snow..they said the guide yelled .SKI...fast..they just escaped it. Much drinking was done later..they did not ski the next day..Much drinking....
 

FBGM

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No solid info yet. All prelim. 5 buried UT around noon today. Worst of worst if true. Hope they just reported wrong and all is fine. Potential to be worst ever in UT if true.

Had 9-15” new snow yesterday with bad winds. Lots of big natural cycles last night. A rabbit could set off a skid walking on a 35° slope right now.
 

raisingarizona

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The worst case is when a new layer doesn't bond with the layer below. Here we get ice layers which the new snow just sits on waiting to go.
Worst I've ever seen and skied. St Anton. 2 days of solid rain..overnight freeze..then 3 feet plus on top. The whole place avalanched..then we went skiing with guides. Scary as you hit that layer in certain areas no matter how deep it was. You can't go out if its all class 4. The stuff on the top of the peaks was a 4, but we were in class 3 which while scary is manageable with a good guide. These guys has 30 to 40 years experience. Crossing these huge slide paths sux..frozen boulders.
Oh man, it sounds like you really know your stuff. You must have years and years of experience.
 

FBGM

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No solid info yet. All prelim. 5 buried UT around noon today. Worst of worst if true. Hope they just reported wrong and all is fine. Potential to be worst ever in UT if true.

Had 9-15” new snow yesterday with bad winds. Lots of big natural cycles last night. A rabbit could set off a skid walking on a 35° slope right now.
Worst case avoided. Reports saying no deaths all recovered. Somehow. Really curious to hear this accident report. People are just tempting fate out here.
 
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