Use either your free hand or an avalanche shovel to dig an air pocket near your nose and mouthWhen the avalanche slows downWith a small air pocket to breathe from, you should have enough air to last at least minutesTake a deep breath before the snow settles.
An avalanche is made up of an underlying bed of snow, a weaker layer (such as fresh powder) and an overlaying snow slabAdd a stressor, usually additional snow or a falling rock, and the weight can collapse the weaker layer and send the slab slidingAdd the weight of a human, or a group of humans, and the same thing can happen.
Avalanche SafetyThousands of avalanches occur each winter in the mountains of ColoradoWith the enormous popularity of winter sports in Colorado, this poses a risk to skiers, snowboarders, hikers and snowmobilersOn average, people die in avalanches in the state of Colorado every year.
AVALANCHE SAFETYIn an average winter in the western United States, about , avalanches will tumble down mountainsidesThis is why you should always stay on a path and try not to ever venture in the backcountryIn the United States and Canada crashing walls of white will tumble over about people.
Avalanche probes are lightweight, collapsible poles that allow you to pinpoint someones location under the snow so that you can dig them outAvalanche shovels are strong, lightweight and compactDigging someone out of avalanche debris is the hardest, most time consuming step of a rescueGet the training.
Avalanche safety is key for mountain operators throughout the worldThese scary and confusing forces of nature happen suddenly and the statistics arent in the victims shares that approximately of victims are killed by trauma and of those that survive, more than half will die within the first minutes.
Avalanche Safety TipsHere are some positive steps you can take to minimize your avalanche riskTake an avalanche safety courseMany organizations (including regional hiking clubs and REI) offer avalanche awareness coursesThese are designed to help casual hikers and snowshoers identify and avoid avalanche terrain.