3.05.2009

Avalanches

So I am sitting here, in my ski clothes STILL after another AMAZING day at Squaw today. Little Katie and I went out and had a blast, ate a cookie or two, laughed a lot, it was great. The snow conditions here have been amazing, but, with something so amazing also comes danger... Avalanches. Avalanches are not a joke, they are something that can not be taken lightly, these things are dangerous. I really don't think people understand how much danger they are putting themselves in with these snow conditions especially when they are unaware of snow conditions. Out here in California we have the good old Sierra cement snow, we have been getting snow continuously for the past several days, today was sunny, hint hint, this is going to mess with the conditions, things are going to slide ESPECIALLY if more snow comes ( and I am guessing it might because of the big dark cloud that chased us out of Squaw today).
You can go to: 
www.avalanche.org 
and you can check out the conditions of your local area, find out the if their is an advisory out, like today was "near and above treeline, avalanche danger is moderate on NW-N-NE-E-SE aspects, 35 degrees and steeper. Below treeline, avalanche danger is low". 
Up at Squaw there was an in bounds avalanche that ended up taking a ski patroller with it while doing a snow check. Today Katie and I watched 2 little sluff slides go off with people ripping turns and completely unaware of their surroundings even in ski area boundaries. 
If you are going out into a place were you are worried about an avalanche DON'T GO ALONE! Wear a beacon, and most importantly make sure the people you are with KNOW HOW TO USE THEM! Remember, if you know how to use one, you'll be able to find them...but...if they have to look for you your life is then in THEIR hands. Before you go out hide the beacon and see if they can find it. You are not being rude by doing this, you are being safe...if the person has a problem with having to go and search for the beacon then that is a hint to you that they probably don't know how to actually use one. Bring a shovel, water, probe, food, etc. Be ready! 
Avalanche's can happen at anytime, it is better to be prepared than it is not to be. Take the extra step to be safe! 

THINK BEFORE YOU GO OUT WITH ALL THE NEW SNOW!!!!! 

CHEERS! 

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