GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — Avalanche danger is categorized as considerable throughout all of Colorado. The number of avalanche fatalities has past its decade-long peak average of 6 to a total of 11 so far in the state.
Knowing the forecast is the first step to being prepared for what’s been a wild season this year.
“The avalanches that we’re seeing are unusual;” Ethan Greene informs, “they’re breaking wider, they’re running further then we often see. You can trigger them from lower angle terrain. All of these features make it challenging for Back Country recreationalists.”
A little bit of education can save your life. There’s classes you can take to know how to use the essential tools along with what is needed to help find someone trapped.
Aside from the physical gear, one of the best tools to have on the slope is the buddy system.
“If you do decide to go out in avalanche terrain, recreate with other people;” David Deming advises, “have a clear and defined plan of action if anyone sees an avalanche or you come across recent avalanche evidence or debris.”
If you’re planning to be in the Back Country, information to better prep your trip can be found at colorado.gov/avalanche.
For first-timers, you can also get essentials and some insight at local shops like Summit Canyon Mountaineering.