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Old 01-11-2009, 02:36 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Avalanche near Terrace, BC claims 1

Snowboarder dies in hospital after avalanche near Terrace, B.C.
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Snowboarder dies in hospital after avalanche near Terrace, B.C.

Staff Reporter, The Province
Published: Saturday, January 10, 2009

TERRACE, B.C. - A 39-year-old American snowboarder who was buried in an avalanche along with his teenaged son and a group of heli-skiers at B.C.'s Alice Mountain on Thursday has died. Terrace RCMP say they were informed Saturday the man had died after being transferred from a local hospital to a Washington state medical facility. The group of skiers and boarders had been dropped onto a mountain by helicopter at Alice Mountain, 15 kilometres northwest of Terrace, for their third run of the day. They triggered an avalanche at about 1,500 metres. Two skiers managed to avoid the first avalanche, but a second, adjacent slide hit at the same time and swept up the boarders. The 39-year-old was buried for about 10 minutes before three groups of skiers on the mountain managed to pull him out. His 19-year-old son rode the surface of the slide and was rescued without injury. The injured man was taken by helicopter first to Terrace Mills Memorial Hospital, then to the U.S., but did not survive. "Our condolences go out to the victim's family at this very difficult time," said Terrace RCMP spokeswoman Const. Cindy Nunes. The victim's family have asked that his name not be released.

AVALANCHE AWARENESS

News of B.C.'s 11th avalanche-related death came the same day the provincial government was launching Avalanche Awareness Days. Public Safety Minister John van Dongen was on Grouse Mountain Saturday to encourage skiers, snowboarders and back-country enthusiasts to use extra caution during this high-risk avalanche season. He was joined by teams from Canadian Avalanche Association and AdventureSmart in demonstrations of how to use safety tools and techniques. The awareness event also runs on Sunday at Grouse, and includes info on trip preparation and training, gear and other safety tips. The Canadian Avalanche Centre said Saturday that the risk of further slides - especially in the B.C./Alberta Rockies where more snow was falling Saturday on a precarious snowpack - is rated extreme. Find out more at Welcome to avalanche.ca, AdventureSmart - Get informed and go outdoors and www.pep.bc.ca.
GlobalBC OnScreen Meteorologist Kristi Gordon was in the group that got caught. This is her first-hand report of what happened. (the person referred to as in critical condition is now the deceased)
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Old 01-11-2009, 02:51 AM   #2 (permalink)
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seems odd he would die after surviving the avy. what did he die from all that good candaian free health care ahahah jk.
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Old 01-12-2009, 07:29 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Most people die from the trauma caused by an avalanche. Even if they are dug out in just a few minutes the damage is done. The best way to survive an avalanche is to not get caught in one.

RIP.
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Old 02-18-2009, 08:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Good advice =[


RIP
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Old 02-19-2009, 05:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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have you ever triggered an avy or been in one killclimbz
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Old 02-20-2009, 11:03 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I've set off one riding a slope. Fortunately it only slid about 20 feet before settling on a bench. I grabbed a tree and hung on.

I've also set off several slides by dropping cornices onto slopes, making slope cuts, or just by being in the area. Earlier this season our group remotely set off several slides on Vail Pass just by our weight on the snow. We were in safe zones, but the ridges 30-60ft away were releasing as we traveled on top of the ridge.

Here is a pic of the fracture from the slide we caused by doing a slope cut at Vail Pass. This was basically a one and done day. We rode the slide path and left. During the process of leaving we set off 3 more slides, though they were a good distance away from us.

I've also seen some big releases from a distance. Natural stuff. If you travel in the backcountry enough, you are going to see/cause slides. It's how you approach it that makes the difference. Causing a slide because you intended to, is a whole lot different than causing one because you were riding a slope. I'll always take the former over the latter.

I had a friend get caught by one on Wolf Creek Pass and it was one of the hairiest moments in my life. Watching my buddy just get thrashed by the slide and being able to do nothing but watch sucked. Fortunately he was able to use a tree to halt himself while on the slope and not in the deposition zone. He lost one of his poles and had some bruises but was otherwise alright. At the time I was getting ready to have to dig. If it had of come down to that it would have almost certainly been a race to get him breathing and then get to a spot with cell phone coverage to call for help. Luckily it didn't come to that.

Last edited by killclimbz; 02-20-2009 at 11:06 AM.
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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crazy i think it would be cool to see a avalanch. If your good could you ride one out? Just ride on top of the slid or would that be impossiable?
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Old 02-26-2009, 07:21 AM   #8 (permalink)
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That has been tried by just about every pro, rider, skier out there. 90% of them are dead.

You might get lucky, those who have escaped did not have far to go to get to a safe zone. You might have 50-100ft you can travel before you are toppled over. That's being generous. The amount of force moving snow makes is incredible. Staying on top of it is not much of an option.

Getting caught is most likely your death sentence. Most people die from their injuries in an avalanche. Even if they are quickly recovered. The last avalanche incident in Montana had a quick recovery of a snowmobiler. That was a week ago. Last I checked he was still in the hospital in critical condition. Last year a skier that was buried and quickly recovered on Cameron Pass in Colorado died of his injuries two weeks later. Moral of the story, don't get caught in the first place.
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