(Last Updated On: December 15, 2008)
Sadly, it appears that yesterday, 12-14-08, will go down as the first avalanche fatality in CO, just outside of the Aspen ski area. Inbounds at Snowbird, there was also a fatality, and an inbounds slide at Vail as well. My thoughts go out to everyone who knew the victims.
The CAIC website has had this to say about the snowpack in the Crested Butte area: “Try as we might, we can’t find anything good to say about this year’s snowpack.” I can’t find anything to argue with in that statement. Name a culprit when it comes to avalanches, and we have it (and a lot of it)– surface hoar, depth hoar, windslabs, suncrusts, even a raincrust in Northern CO and Utah as well, according to reports. It’s snowing out right now, and snow is expected to fall all week. The best hope right now may be that the snow causes natural avalanches to run their course and we can start over again. Otherwise, this season will be marked by flat pow turns from now until spring- certainly not what was enjoyed last year. Be safe out there people!