telemark skiingbackcountry skiingPacific NorthwestWashington and Oregonweather linksThe Yuki AwardsMt. Rainier and Mt. Adams
Turns All Year
www.turns-all-year.com
  Help | Search | Login | Register
Turns All Year Trip Reports
Backcountry Skiing and Snowboarding

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
11/23/17, 02:17 PM

Become a TAY Sponsor!
 
Trip Reports Sponsor
Feathered Friends
Feathered Friends
Turns All Year Trip Reports
(1) Viewing these pages constitutes your acceptance of the Terms of Use.
(2) Disclaimer: the accuracy of information here is unknown, use at your own risk.
(3) Trip Report monthly boards: only actual trip report starts a new thread.
(4) Keep it civil and constructive - that is the norm here.
 
FOAC Snow
Info Exchange


NWAC Avalanche
Forecast
+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  Hot Air
| |-+  Weak Layers: decision making in avalanche terrain
| | |-+  February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
:
« previous next »
Pages: 1 2 3 [All] | Go Down Print
Author Topic: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche  (Read 38788 times)
avajane
Member
Offline

Posts: 749


February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« on: 02/23/14, 12:24 PM »

Just saw an avalanche observation in NWAC about an avalanche with a 10' crown that came off the north face of Chair Peak and traveled 1900'. Three skiers were partially buried, but I guess uninjured. I'd like to see this report on here...
Logged

Brian Izdepski, Facebook TAY
prestonf
Member
Offline

Posts: 108


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #1 on: 02/23/14, 01:36 PM »

Well, I'm sure info will make its way out.  Maybe NWAC will do a report?  In the meantime, I don't think the folks involved owe the internet anything if they don't feel like it.  Sounds scary.  Glad no one was injured!!
Logged
silaswild
Member
Offline

Posts: 1631


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #2 on: 02/23/14, 01:59 PM »

http://www.livingsnoqualmie.com/lucky-skiers-escape-avalanche-chair-peak-near-snoqualmie-pass/
Logged
Charlie Hagedorn
Member
Offline

Posts: 1823


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #3 on: 02/23/14, 02:17 PM »

In the meantime, I don't think the folks involved owe the internet anything if they don't feel like it.

Agreed. Even if the party does decide to post about it, there's no rush.

Super glad only skis were lost; hope no one else was below along frequently-traveled routes.

Thanks to those (perhaps the party itself) who reported the slide to NWAC for getting the word out.
Logged

freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #4 on: 02/23/14, 03:36 PM »

Is chair peak concidered a safe treed terrain or a hazzardous avy terrain objective?
Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
Marcus
Administrator
Offline

Posts: 2440


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #5 on: 02/23/14, 03:39 PM »

If I'm guessing right, this is the slope that slid.  Skiers were perhaps on the bench/ridge lower left?
Logged
avajane
Member
Offline

Posts: 749


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #6 on: 02/23/14, 04:35 PM »

Is chair peak concidered a safe treed terrain or a hazzardous avy terrain objective?

One mans safe...

Not the kind of position I would intentionally put myself in right now. I'm skinning roads, hiding in trees, and skiing low angle ridge lines. Yesterday it sucked - today I found fantastic snow. There is good stuff to be found in relatively safe areas, but I guess you have to know where they are.
Logged

Brian Izdepski, Facebook TAY
aaron_wright
Member
Offline

Posts: 573


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #7 on: 02/23/14, 05:16 PM »

Is that the normal route those folks are taking? That seems really cavalier, the crossloading on that slope is screaming at them. Wouldn't it be safer to climb to the small saddle above them and traverse just under the cliffs? I don't know that area.
If I'm guessing right, this is the slope that slid.  Skiers were perhaps on the bench/ridge lower left?

Logged
Marcus
Administrator
Offline

Posts: 2440


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #8 on: 02/23/14, 05:22 PM »

I've only been up there once or twice, so others can weigh in, but the typical approach to that ridge is out of frame to the lower left and not in the line of fire from that cliff and the cross-loaded slope.  The approach path to where this picture was taken is pretty steep and open in its own right, though perhaps less exposed than the pictured terrain.
Logged
Squakmtn
5Member
Offline

Posts: 71


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #9 on: 02/23/14, 07:44 PM »

My guess is the slide started above the folks in the picture posted by Marcus and then ran down the low angle rolling terrain that ends at a very prominent bench which is the top of a large cliff band about 400' above Snow Lake.  There is a chute that drops through that cliff band and on down to the lake and it sounds like the skiers were near the entrance to that chute when the slide happened coming at them from above.  The article linked by Marcus said "Fortunately it banked left of the mountain" which I interpret to mean that they were very lucky it didn't sweep them over that cliff to the lake...

When conditions are right, skiing that chute to the lake can be sublime but it is an obvious major avy path which should be avoided when hazard is considerable.
« Last Edit: 02/23/14, 08:12 PM by Squakmtn » Logged

Squak MountainEars
"We hear there's powder up there"
T. Eastman
Member
Offline

Posts: 439


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #10 on: 02/23/14, 08:03 PM »

Ya think?
Logged
freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #11 on: 02/23/14, 09:22 PM »

Remember,There is no shame in not understanding our current, complex snow pack and making a bad call,except when we pretend we were making a good call and a delancey d3 came down.
Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
Griff
Member
Offline

Posts: 486


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #12 on: 02/23/14, 09:31 PM »

Skied the east side of chair with my son yesterday. About 10 different  groups out. Snow felt solid yet that was the surface snow.

The route through Bryant colouir is the normal route and is where the skiers are in the pics. You really can't make that bench due to hazard on the other side.

I am glad no one was killed below them at the lake. Some friends headed that way at noon.

My takeaway is that one just never knows, especially with the weird winter we have seen. 
Logged
T. Eastman
Member
Offline

Posts: 439


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #13 on: 02/23/14, 10:19 PM »

... so essentially playing roulette is cool as long as you are lucky...
Logged
Snoqualmonix
Member
Offline

Posts: 294


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #14 on: 02/24/14, 12:42 AM »

Just wanted to offer a few clarifying points and some other food for thought since there's still much incomplete info we're speculating on.

Chair peak is just over 6200', the living snoqualmie story (which is written by a local blogger here in the valley, and though a great piece of sometimes local news/gossip, is not a stand alone source of news) stated the slide ran from 6200' on the north aspect.  If this is accurate this means the north face, a popular alpine climbing route, went above the party.  And if this is accurate, they were trapped in an exposed area which had greater consequences for them than the slope/slab/angle/tress vs. open slope we're quick to jump to. 

After enjoying the storm of the season here last week, I had the good fortune to spend the last two day in the baker bc while teaching some courses that heavily discussed red flags and terrain selection.  If this party's observations were similar to mine, there might have been different days in which they were shocked by the stability observed and tested relative to obvious flags created from the storm #'s and avy forecast and as such, used their judgement and experience to venture beyond the 20 degree woods.  If if this has any accuracy, then a reminder is good for all of us that terrain traps live heavily above us too.  But then again, I am also speculating.

Griff, sorry brother, but your geography's a bit off.  Skiers in photo are under the NE buttress of chair, venturing out under north face.  They would have come from chair east basin (above source), which is behind them and down a few 100'.  Bryant couloir leaves from source basin, but can take you up and around behind chair (if doing clockwise circumnav).  None of those zones around Source/Chair east basin should be considered "safe" to play in by any stretch of the imagination, but instead a shooting gallery of 5+ active slide paths IMO.  I do agree that one never knows, that's the magic of it when the science stops!  Glad you and the flying kid were out getting after it, perhaps ill see you before the April powder storms this year!

Be safe y'all, study hard, look for yourself and point your tips and be brave!
« Last Edit: 02/24/14, 07:58 AM by alpine-earth » Logged

-----------------
"Point your tips and be brave"

If someone skis in the Cascades and doesn't post on the internet, did it even happen?
Griff
Member
Offline

Posts: 486


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #15 on: 02/24/14, 10:21 AM »

Thanks Morgan. I thought I might be a bit off, was just trying to orientate myself. Appreciate you setting the record straight for all......and me. LOL.

We had a great time on the east side of Chair on Saturday, take a look.

Oh it sounds like G is taking another class this spring at the club. COOL!! Maybe I will come down and get in to shape. UGH!


* Graham_-_CPB.png (98.79 KB, 458x258 - viewed 1939 times.)
Logged
mattgoyer
Member
Offline

Posts: 104


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #16 on: 02/24/14, 12:05 PM »

Here's the accident report: http://www.nwac.us/observations/pk/101/
Logged
alpentalcorey
Member
Offline

Posts: 355


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #17 on: 02/24/14, 12:53 PM »

Did the slide really happen at midnight?  Or perhaps that's when everyone finally got out and things got reported?  Seems an odd time/place to be out there, though I remember thinking about trying to do something like that with headlamps on both wrists and thighs.  Never really made it happen.
Logged
Mattski
Member
Offline

Posts: 154


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #18 on: 02/24/14, 12:54 PM »

Some key details that exceed most observations we make:
  • 10'crown-skier impact maxes out at 3' down
  • [li]Snowpack observations and tests rarely go deeper than 6'

    This slab might represent the entire recent storm snow at and above treeline in the Snoq Pass zone where there is no telemetry to look for actual storm totals and winds. This might be similar to the very large slides that came off the Shuksan arm in the 98/99 season which ran multiple times and the MLK crust from that season. The crust posed the risk of large storms lingering until they were 8-15' deep then failed naturally.

    Very difficult to understand the circumstances of the group's position and decision making without a firsthand account. It does speak to the issue of terrain choice right now regarding at and above treeline North facing terrain with a deeply buried raincrust with large storm & wind slabs now above.
Logged
Charlie Hagedorn
Member
Offline

Posts: 1823


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #19 on: 02/24/14, 01:07 PM »

Did the slide really happen at midnight? 

If you look at the rest of the list,

http://www.nwac.us/observations/

every event occurs at "midnight", perhaps an artifact of the underlying data structure. In the comments for the Chair Peak slide, they lead off with "12:00 PM", presumably noon-ish.

Logged

alpentalcorey
Member
Offline

Posts: 355


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #20 on: 02/24/14, 02:15 PM »

Thanks, that makes more sense.
Logged
ps44
Member
Offline

Posts: 139


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #21 on: 02/24/14, 02:25 PM »

... so essentially playing roulette is cool as long as you are lucky...

I agree with this sentiment.  The north side of Chair Peak in my opinion is a no go zone after recent massive snowfall, without giving the snowpack a day or two (or a week) to consolidate, and with possible buried unstable layers.

The area above Source Lake towards the Chair Peak should be treated very cautiously; I have seen massive debris piles filling up the entire Source Lake basin with car-sized slab chunks.  Glad everybody is alive with a story to tell...
Logged
tabski
Member
Offline

Posts: 246


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #22 on: 02/24/14, 05:30 PM »

It seems to me we know more about the psychology and experience of the people commenting in this thread than the avalanche incident itself.





Logged
Splitter
Member
Offline

Posts: 199


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #23 on: 02/24/14, 09:03 PM »

Based on limited facts available it appears poor decision making played a part. The rush to judgement makes me uncomfortable because I own it as much as anyone and while it may be accurate in this case, it is so easy to be wrong. Better to hold out a hand than start swinging a stick.
Logged
JoshK
Member
Offline

Posts: 140


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #24 on: 02/24/14, 10:09 PM »

Based on limited facts available it appears poor decision making played a part. The rush to judgement makes me uncomfortable because I own it as much as anyone and while it may be accurate in this case, it is so easy to be wrong. Better to hold out a hand than start swinging a stick.

Agreed. Considering the lack of reply from those involved (I refuse to believe they don't at least view this site), I would imagine there is an element of embarrassment involved that is leading them to remain quiet. Speculation, armchair QBing and the like probably won't encourage people to speak up.
Logged
T. Eastman
Member
Offline

Posts: 439


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #25 on: 02/24/14, 10:14 PM »

Quote
Speculation, armchair QBing and the like probably won't encourage people to speak up.

Should they be coddled and given stars?
Logged
jj
5Member
Offline

Posts: 83


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #26 on: 02/24/14, 10:51 PM »

Should they be coddled and given stars?

I don't think anyone has suggested coddling or handing out stars.  Rather, it is a question of whether we should give people the benefit of the doubt or assume the worst when we discuss an event for which we don't know the facts.

For what it's worth, it looks like many folks have been caught unexpectedly by slides from above their position.  See the NWAC Observation on February 24 for another example.  If this was also the case for the 2/22 event perhaps it's more forgivable than we might otherwise assume.

However, to directly answer your question...  I guess the degree to which we make this a comfortable place for the 2/22 event skiers to tell their story depends on how badly we want to get more information.  I am willing to defer judgement to the extent that it results in more information that we can all use to make sound backcountry decisions.
« Last Edit: 02/25/14, 03:15 PM by jj » Logged
T. Eastman
Member
Offline

Posts: 439


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #27 on: 02/24/14, 11:21 PM »

jj, perhaps you are desiring more information than you need to calculate into your decision matrix during and immediately large snow events.  Following the past weeks' weather cycle one could clearly see that there was:

- A boatload of snow over the past week or so, and
- Much of that snow was delivered with wind, and
- The terrain is relatively steep, and
- Bonding of layers deep in the snowpack has been suspect for much of the winter.

This information is primarily non-scientific, area-wide, and can generate a go/no-go decision, or a choice to ski less threatening terrain. 
Logged
Gregg_C
Member
Offline

Posts: 344


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #28 on: 02/25/14, 06:21 AM »

I would suggest that this forum should be an area for all backcountry enthusiasts to learn as much as possible about avalanche events.  If it is going to be a rant session then so be it.  Personally, and professionally as an AIARE instructor, I would like everyone to post the details of events and near misses without others making comments as to the soundness of their decisions.  Read the article below.

http://sportgevity.com/article/changing-culture-shame-0

If we take a systems error approach to analyzing events we will have a setting where more knowledge and incite will be gained.  I have been guilty of making quick judgement in the past and I have recently come to the understanding that many of us have had the experience of making poor decisions.  My poor decisions would certainly have seemed foolhardy to others in hindsight.  Nobody wants to be embarrassed publicly or called out as being stupid.  We are engaged in an activity that is potentially quite harmful.  The risks can never be reduced to nil.  However, lets try and learn as much as possible about events so our collective knowledge for ALL backcountry users is improved.

Here is a link to an excellent post that discusses this issue surrounding events in BC. 

http://www.backcountrybc.org/2013_12_25_archive.html

Gregg Cronn
Logged
aaron_wright
Member
Offline

Posts: 573


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #29 on: 02/25/14, 06:47 AM »

Of course they visit this site, one of them posted in yardsale and random tracks about their splitter and pair skis they lost in the slide.
Logged
LukerBee
5Member
Offline

Posts: 75


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #30 on: 02/25/14, 08:25 AM »

... If this was also the case for the 2/23 event perhaps it's more forgivable than we might otherwise assume.

However, to directly answer your question...  I guess the degree to which we make this a comfortable place for the 2/23 event skiers to tell their story depends on how badly we want to get more information....

Was there an avalanche at Chair on 2/22 and 2/23?
Logged
Griff
Member
Offline

Posts: 486


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #31 on: 02/25/14, 09:57 AM »

I would suggest that this forum should be an area for all backcountry enthusiasts to learn as much as possible about avalanche events.  If it is going to be a rant session then so be it.  Personally, and professionally as an AIARE instructor, I would like everyone to post the details of events and near misses without others making comments as to the soundness of their decisions.  Read the article below.

http://sportgevity.com/article/changing-culture-shame-0

If we take a systems error approach to analyzing events we will have a setting where more knowledge and incite will be gained.  I have been guilty of making quick judgement in the past and I have recently come to the understanding that many of us have had the experience of making poor decisions.  My poor decisions would certainly have seemed foolhardy to others in hindsight.  Nobody wants to be embarrassed publicly or called out as being stupid.  We are engaged in an activity that is potentially quite harmful.  The risks can never be reduced to nil.  However, lets try and learn as much as possible about events so our collective knowledge for ALL backcountry users is improved.

Here is a link to an excellent post that discusses this issue surrounding events in BC. 

http://www.backcountrybc.org/2013_12_25_archive.html

Gregg Cronn


Thank you bro. This is the real reason this community exists. Not to use strongly worded posts that say "WTF were you thinking?".

I have a regular post on my Team's Facebook page on Friday's called "Come Back for Another Day" and deeply believe that is "right" perspective for me and the folks I climb with (primarily my son) to have. I started in 1984 and want to keep comin back until the day I die from something other than an avy.

My post from this past Friday was simply "a lot of new snow, high avy warning by NWAC, good weekend to be smart". I was also out on Friday in the Alpy BC so felt like I had a good feeling for the snow. That does not mean though that I felt "safe".

So heading up a short way in less then 20-25 degree slopes was within my danger spectrum. Climbing higher, or under cornices or onto steep terrain was not. My son jumping off a cliff was not steep terrain per se. LOL. 
Logged
trees4me
Member
Offline

Posts: 509


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #32 on: 02/25/14, 12:13 PM »

Some key details that exceed most observations we make:
  • 10'crown-skier impact maxes out at 3' down
  • [li]Snowpack observations and tests rarely go deeper than 6'

    This slab might represent the entire recent storm snow at and above treeline in the Snoq Pass zone where there is no telemetry to look for actual storm totals and winds. This might be similar to the very large slides that came off the Shuksan arm in the 98/99 season which ran multiple times and the MLK crust from that season. The crust posed the risk of large storms lingering until they were 8-15' deep then failed naturally.



Really appreciate your comments. 

I find these deep snow slides are very difficult to predict since many of our typical tools aren't applicable at these scales.  The observational tools work, but can't be easily validated with testing.  Hopefully the deep weak layer is strengthening.  However, the reported slide makes it appear that the large storm slab is very close to naturally sliding, and that is not a comforting thought.


Logged

chill people, skiing is fun
kerwinl
5Member
Offline

Posts: 27


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #33 on: 02/25/14, 01:12 PM »

Really appreciate your comments. 

I find these deep snow slides are very difficult to predict since many of our typical tools aren't applicable at these scales.  The observational tools work, but can't be easily validated with testing.  Hopefully the deep weak layer is strengthening.  However, the reported slide makes it appear that the large storm slab is very close to naturally sliding, and that is not a comforting thought.



The weight of one person in comparison to the weight of the snow when the weak layer is buried this far down is insignificant. The inability to trigger slides unless at shallow spots may explain why people in general are observing good stability in their test and observations while out this past weekend, but we are still seeing large failures happen in multiple places. It will be interesting to see what happens as we get a period of warming over the next few days.
Logged
jj
5Member
Offline

Posts: 83


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #34 on: 02/25/14, 03:15 PM »

Was there an avalanche at Chair on 2/22 and 2/23?

Sorry. Typo on my part. Fixed in the original post.
Logged
freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #35 on: 02/25/14, 05:25 PM »

It is actually a better discussion with out the self incident report.the goal is education.te:we have a ski line here called ''russian roulette''.we all play,every day,that's life,but it's better to increase the odds in your favor and an understanding of the properties of snow helps, such as rapid loading vs. gradual loading. I think that's science.
« Last Edit: 02/25/14, 05:51 PM by freeskiguy » Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
CookieMonster
Member
Offline

Posts: 523


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #36 on: 02/25/14, 05:59 PM »

I think we can all accept that people are gonna do stupid things, but if you belong to this site, and buy gear from this site, and post avalanche incident notifications, then I think you can expect that the tribe will want to have its say. And is that such a bad thing? There are a lot of people here who know a lot of stuff.

Over the past few days, I've participated in a review of an accident ( with fatality ) that occurred last year. It didn't happen on Chair Peak, and it was skier-triggered rather than remotely-triggered, but other than that, the incidents are pretty much interchangeable. Increasingly that's what I see when I review accidents. The names of the people and places are different, but pretty much everything else is the same.
Logged

blitz
Member
Offline

Posts: 334


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #37 on: 02/25/14, 06:37 PM »

This was an interesting TR, on the same day as this chair peak slide:

http://www.turns-all-year.com/skiing_snowboarding/trip_reports/index.php?topic=30882.0

The aspect is different, but it's the same big dump of snow on the same three weeks of crust.
Logged

alisa
freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #38 on: 02/25/14, 08:01 PM »

The tr indicates no wind loading at that line. Maybe a factor or maybe the next person down would have triggered the thing.
Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
JoshK
Member
Offline

Posts: 140


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #39 on: 02/25/14, 09:06 PM »

This was an interesting TR, on the same day as this chair peak slide:

http://www.turns-all-year.com/skiing_snowboarding/trip_reports/index.php?topic=30882.0

The aspect is different, but it's the same big dump of snow on the same three weeks of crust.

I probably wouldn't have pushed my luck in the slot on that day (nor would most people I ski with), but I wasn't there, so I can't say if it was safe or not. It may have been a perfectly reasonable call, who knows...not I.

Though I will offer this: plenty of the time survival is blind luck. This was illustrated to me a couple of years back when I was returning to the Baker ski area, back from Ptarmigan Ridge and Table Mountain. The avalanche risk was what I would consider quite serious. I had been out there a couple nights and it snowed more than expected, so I managed things best I could, and kept it as mellow as I was able. One slope I had to ski cut and it slid rather significantly. Upon nearing the ski area I saw plenty of "sick line, bro" folks dropping off the ridges (some corniced, plenty loaded) right outside the ski area, where it is not controlled. All it takes is one guy doing it, and all the other sheeple follow. Anyway, it wasn't a smart day to be doing that given the conditions. I don't think anybody who had a clue about avalanche risk would have been, but it's safe to say 99.99% of the folks doing it didn't fall in that category. Luckily they didn't trigger anything, but they may well have. Let's say the risk was 10% to trigger something; and yes, I realize this isn't something you could ever put a statistical chance on, but I digress. I imagine most anybody here would say that is far too high of a risk to take. On the other hand, if 9 people drop in on one of those lines, it's also perfectly possible that nothing will trigger. When nothing does, it simply reinforces the behavior. Maybe those folks I saw that day will have their luck run out at some point, or maybe they won't, who knows. What I took from that experience was that I never want to operate that way, and I'd prefer to stack the deck in my favor. Will that remove all risk, or guarantee that I won't screw up at some point? Of course not, but I'm at least going to try my best.
Logged
avajane
Member
Offline

Posts: 749


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #40 on: 02/25/14, 11:14 PM »

I started this post by saying "I'd like to see the report on here..."

Since then there has been two pages of posts - mostly critical of being below Chair Peak in such a position - at this level of avalanche danger.

Lots of others, however, have been non-committal and wanting to see  what those involved had to say.

Others have said we should refrain from any criticism or judgements, so that there was a supportive place where people could share their observations.

I like all of these responses, and hope that everyone continues as they have.  I've been on this site for a few years now, and have never  seen anyone get way out of hand. I used to be on rec.climbing during it's heyday, and know what bad flaming and trolling is all about. That doesn't really happen here. I think there are enough people here that know  we are really all idiots - so they always give some slack no matter what. There are also many others who say "WTF - what were you thinking"

It's great to be supportive and non-judgemental so that people feel free to share. It's also important that someone has the nerve to ask the hard questions, and even level criticism from time to time. Being a community doesn't mean we always have to  love each other. But is is nice when we are reasonable civil. I always try to be pretty good here because I know I'm an idiot, I've often had bad judgement, and despite many years of doing this, I still don't really know when something will slide.

If the group that was in that stupid, dangerous position Wink reads this.... We really do want to know why - as most think it's instructive.

Just for the record, I remember rambling around in a near whiteout without a compass or map and  trying to climb Snoqualmie Peak. I'm absolutely certain we had no idea of the Avy danger, no idea what we were under, and I'm sure we didn't have more than 3 or 4 of the ten essentials. My old partner might read this and remember the facts differently - but he's an idiot too!
Logged

Brian Izdepski, Facebook TAY
Charlie Hagedorn
Member
Offline

Posts: 1823


WWW
Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #41 on: 02/26/14, 08:09 AM »

Cross-link for future readers -- the reporting party posted a trip report here:

http://www.turns-all-year.com/skiing_snowboarding/trip_reports/index.php?topic=30926.0
Logged

flowing alpy
Member
Offline

Posts: 1176


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #42 on: 02/27/14, 09:29 AM »

Of course they visit this site, one of them posted in yardsale and random tracks about their splitter and pair skis they lost in the slide.

this one appeared more urgent, those dudes just wanted to get right back at it.
relatives of rog
b
Logged
freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #43 on: 03/01/14, 03:07 PM »

I've seen that ''rog'' refference before,what is it about?
Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
chieftaffy
Member
Offline

Posts: 101


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #44 on: 03/03/14, 02:20 PM »

I've seen that ''rog'' refference before,what is it about?

= dragon chasers
Logged

Alpental aspirant...
dberdinka
Member
Offline

Posts: 152


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #45 on: 03/03/14, 04:11 PM »

this one appeared more urgent, those dudes just wanted to get right back at it.

Ya think maybe they just wanted to get their skis back like anyone would?   Seriously you all need to move on.

Logged
JoshK
Member
Offline

Posts: 140


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #46 on: 03/04/14, 12:15 PM »

Ya think maybe they just wanted to get their skis back like anyone would?   Seriously you all need to move on.



LOL!! Well done, sir.

This topic will be hard to let die off this week with little good skiing to be found in this crap weather. That's just the reality of the matter I do believe :-/
Logged
freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #47 on: 03/05/14, 10:29 PM »

I look forward to the day when courage is not required to speak up about the mistakes we make while pursueing our passions that carry some risk. Even skiing tree lines, when the conditions favor avy formation above the tree line, is risky. But when some one drops into a tree well or hits a tree, no one trys to shame them.
« Last Edit: 03/05/14, 10:34 PM by freeskiguy » Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
T. Eastman
Member
Offline

Posts: 439


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #48 on: 03/05/14, 10:42 PM »

Quote
But when some one drops into a tree well or hits a tree, no one trys to shame them.

... oh just give me the opportunity. 

Actually there has been no shaming going on from my perspective.  We have just witnessed perhaps the most participated discussion ever to have landed in TAYville.  A spirited discussion perhaps but that is far better than a parade of well wishes, pseudo-scientific babble, with-ya-bro comments that avoid the simple and obvious errors that contribute to the same results in the same conditions time and time again.

The biggest decision has already been made when you park the car at the trail head...
Logged
freeski
Member
Offline

Posts: 531


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #49 on: 03/06/14, 08:32 AM »

Ya think?
did you read about the upcoming talk that nwac is having on avy analysis and hindsight? Those shows should be made available for those who cannot go. What happens in the field differs from our theories on the interweb after the fact. Someone asked what do the pros do during a Pwl. Well, some take clients out into avy terrain during high hazard. From my pov, that's shameful.
« Last Edit: 03/06/14, 09:38 AM by freeskiguy » Logged

two sets of principles. They are the principles of power and privilege and the principles of truth and justice. If you pursue truth and justice it will always mean a diminution of power and privilege. If you pursue power and privilege, it will always be at the expense of truth and justice
C Hedges
rlsg
Member
Offline

Posts: 516


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #50 on: 03/10/14, 06:13 PM »

And when you head to lower consequence and 'potential of sliding" area, don't drop your guard about localized wind slab formation especially near little terrain traps (even in the trees..). 

HEADS UP-- ALL THE TIME!
Logged
flowing alpy
Member
Offline

Posts: 1176


Re: February 22, 2014, Chair Peak Large Avalanche
« Reply #51 on: 03/13/14, 05:39 AM »

campbell affairs kinda put this one to rest but in both cases, it was lucky, only material objects were lost.
b
Logged
Pages: 1 2 3 [All] | Go Up Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  



Login with username, password and session length

Thank you to our sponsors!
click to visit our sponsor: Feathered Friends
Feathered Friends
click to visit our sponsor: Marmot Mountain Works
Marmot Mountain Works
click to visit our sponsor: Second Ascent
Second Ascent
click to visit our sponsor: American Alpine Institute
American Alpine Institute
click to visit our sponsor: Pro Guiding Service
Pro Guiding Service
Contact turns-all-year.com

Turns All Year Trip Reports ©2001-2010 Turns All Year LLC. All Rights Reserved

The opinions expressed in posts are those of the poster and do not necessarily
reflect the opinions of Trip Reports administrators or Turns All Year LLC


Turns All Year Trip Reports | Powered by SMF 1.0.6.
© 2001-2005, Lewis Media. All Rights Reserved.