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December 2004, Week 1

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Subject:
From:
steve kijak <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Vermont Skiing Discussion and Snow Reports <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Fri, 3 Dec 2004 06:35:16 -0800
Content-Type:
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>From:         Matt Duffy <[log in to unmask]>
>Subject:      Quandary Avalanche
>
>That was my critical error. It caused other mistakes,
but they all
>fall under the umbrella of slope-angle
underestimation.

That is why I think it is important to skin/hike up
what you plan to ski. It always looks steeper when
you(I mean I) are huffing and puffing to ascend.  You
can measure the actual angle and determine avy hazard
on the way up.

>This is what caused me to ignore the danger rose.
It's also why I >didn't dig a pit;

But you would have dug the pit at the top of your run.
That probably would not have given you reliable
information. On those peaks the wind tends to blow the
snow off. So a pit at the top would have revealed what
was happening to what was left of the most recent
snowfalls.

The area below your fracture line is one of the places
all the snow has been blowing to. So the snow pack
there is old, still thin and has lots of cool stuff
happening to it. Plus as you belatedly discovered it
is a prime avy candidate due to angle.

Glad to hear you are OK. Are you guys the first
Colorado statistic of the season? I am curious about
how Winter will react to her next 30+ degree slope.
Steve



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