The only thing scarier than our "dumpster fire" of a continental snowpack right now are the decisions I see humans making in the backcountry. I spend too much time out there. I’m seeing too much scary stuff. And it causes me to think a tremendous amount about the motivations and behaviors of others.
On January 9, 2017, Jeremy Bird and Mark Helmich set out for a backcountry tour on Coal Bank Pass. That adventure ended with Bird getting swept over a cliff and buried by an avalanche on Highway 550. Jeremy survived this ordeal due to the quick actions of his partner, a passing motorist and a fair bit of luck. The team's story can teach us a tremendous amount about safety...
Since turning the corner into 2019, I’ve taught one level two, two level ones, three avy rescue courses, led one special forces training, guided five, private ski days, enjoyed three personal ski days and slept in my own bed approx. four nights…..and it’s only the 22nd of January!
Upon hearing what I do for a living, many folks comment on how cool the job is.