You have to learn from other peoples mistakes. Every avalanche accident I have scene, the victim in some way has been responsible for their death or injuries. It is always the human factor. Hence the reason to read the analysis as to what happened, so that hopefully you are aware of the danger when you face it. For most of these accidents, it's pretty obvious what you need to watch for. Every now and then, there is something that I learn to watch out for. It's tough, because in general, people have died. I don't like critiquing them either. I certainly don't want to tap dance on someone's grave.
Your avy class should stress the good behavior and protocols part of backcountry travel.
The bc check list has been hashed around back and forth for years. It's a tough one, because to some people, if the list checks out it means go for it, regardless of other considerations. I would like to see more beacon check stations at resort accessed bc gates. I wouldn't mind a sign that said, "this many people have died here since ..." and with a quick description of what you should be prepared for. The reality is, almost every bc spot I go to has a sign warning you of dangers and people will blindly walk on.
Education is the best defense, yet even the educated get popped.
Your questions and observations are tough ones to deal with and valid. There is no one right way, but certainly a right direction. Getting people to think about what they are doing all the time is about the most key point. A distance of a few feet can mean the difference between life and death in this game.
Last edited by killclimbz; 02-08-2013 at 09:38 AM.