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Old 03-09-2009, 06:58 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks for the pic, was not sure exactly where this occurred and that puts it into perspective.

Was that pic recent, like from the actual indident or not? I remember seeing this area when I was there from the top of the ridge, it's definitely a tempting looking hike but KH is a very raw place, this isn't like hiking wawa ridge at Sunshine.

I agree that even in 'considerable' risk days like this one you can find deep turns in the BC, for sure. You've just got to find some lower-angle stuff at or below treeline, usually - this slope was neither, unfortunately.

41 deaths?? Good god, that's pretty high, I believe more than a dozen have been in British Columbia alone.
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:29 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killclimbz View Post
With this latest accident it brings the total number of avalanche fatalities in North America to 41 deaths.
Stupid question... 41 this season, or 41 ever?
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:33 AM   #13 (permalink)
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It is 41 avalanche related deaths this season. I'll have to look up the average but I believe on an annual basis it's in the mid to high 20's, maybe low 30's. So we are getting close to doubling the average, with a lot of season left. We are just getting into the wet slide time of year. 23 fatalities in the US and 18 in Canada. Definitely a high number. I agree that people will always find ways to die. Avalanches being one of them, each loss is still tragic, and this many for the season is abnormally high. The scary thing is the large groups that have been caught. This year has seen a spike of under educated (avy wise) people getting caught and killed. Every time I read an incident where more than one person was buried and killed just makes me cringe. These numbers would be a lot lower if these groups only followed the most basic of rules when traveling in avalanche terrain. Expose one person at a time to danger.
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:48 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Damn, this sucks. It's always sad to hear about a fellow skier/rider going above the peak way before their time. I just hope that people will exercise more caution in the future
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:48 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Looking through the years the average seems to be in the mid to high 30's. This is without crunching numbers. Last year there were 52 deaths. We're on track. The year previous 26. The data I could find goes back to the 98-99 season.

Fact of the matter is people are going to die in wilderness. I know this. I also know we can do a better job getting the word out there. In the early to late 90's, snowboarders were the group that was accounting far a disproportionate amount of fatalities. Before that of course were the skiers. That has changed. The past three years has seen snowmobilers becoming the main group that is getting wiped out. 26 of the fatalities this season have been snowmobilers. They just don't get it. Out of those incidents, four of them involved multiple burials. That is really not getting it...
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Old 03-10-2009, 11:14 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Stupid question... 41 this season, or 41 ever?
Dude, 41 ever??? Stevens Pass 1910 , 96 dead in ONE AVALANCHE. Obviously we know a LOT more now than they did back then. It is a slightly stupid question but you can't really be blamed, unless you live in avalanche risk areas, you typically don't hear as much about it. This is why every year huge advances in research are made because so little is still known. I think I heard someone say that we know more about the surface of the moon than we do the phyiscs of an avalanche, don't quote me on that but it seems believable.

Here's a chart I just found, updated March 1st with total north american deaths by avalanche 1998-present. They also have another one that breaks this season's deaths down by category (snowmobiler, skier, snowboarder, etc.)
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Old 03-10-2009, 11:17 AM   #17 (permalink)
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As for snowmobilers, don't even get me started... Some of the videos posted on youtube of avalanches triggered by snowmobilers who narrowly escape, only to celebrate with their buddies, show how ignorant they are towards the risk. And half the comments on the videos just support the that theory.
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Old 03-11-2009, 09:55 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I think losing 8 snowmobilers in one shot in the Harvey pass avalanche doesn't help the stats.
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