Sunday, June 24, 2012

Firsthand Account of June Montana Avalanche

From the June Montana avalanche, some sobering thoughts from one of the two survivors:


Post subject: Stay on your toes
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 2:05 pm

I'm writing this laying in bed, two days out of surgery. triggered a considerable slide that half-buried my partner (shattered his jawbone, broke his cheek bone and wrist) and hooked me up with a broken leg just this week (monday) here in southwestern montana. This is only my sixth consecutive winter out west, but is undoubtedly the most unstable of any ive seen, and the 19 inches we got last weekend were a brutal reminder that the avalanche danger is as real as anything and will continue into july regardless of how much snow we do or do not get.

I dropped in and took a few turns, cranking a heelside (which in hindsight should have been much gentler) that popped off a slide running over 200 feet, and smashed my partner who was near the bottom against a rockband and carried me quickly and turbulently to the bottom of the chute. we ended up having to get airlifted out and flown to a hospital.. coulda been a lot worse, and to be honest i'm glad it happened or i would still be riding carelessley and guided by an ego better suited for mick jagger or chuck norris.

bottom line: unless youre 120 percent sure your line can not and will not slide, youve dug a pit, and everyone is on board with the plan, youre tempting fate. Not sure why or how im still alive, but I owe my life to the guys that came to my rescue and everyday from here on out is gonna count.. and next season is gonna be mostly spent in bounds, and in church

legs: broken right tib-fib. healing: 6-8 weeks. painkillers for three meals a day.

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