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Author Topic: Avalanche on Mount Washington  (Read 2155 times)

DLottmann

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #30 on: January 01, 2014, 09:33:46 PM »

in their own words...

http://bostonherald.com/news_opinion/local_coverage/2013/12/mass_hiker_recounts_near_fatal_avalanche

yup, that link is posted in my post from yesterday morning on this thread... nothing new here...

I did hear the one still in Maine Med on the radio this morning... recounting the free fall that was long enough to think about...
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lucky luke

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #31 on: January 02, 2014, 09:57:41 AM »

You really hate signs huh? [....] I agree "mitigation" as you call it is important, but ignoring the advice of professionals is crazy. I know I can't change your mind, so I limit my effort to these 5 sentences.

My father was sign maker. I saw signs since I born. I know there value and how people can follow them blindly. Avalanches doesn't follow advisory post. They are always dangerous.

I follow experiences climbers who practice in harder situation than that. As I said, I work out in sand pit, small cliff in quebec, mt Washington and now I am ready for bigger mountain. I am not doing a winter hike for the first time in the mountain.

Look how easy it is to make mistake; Pete Jackson talk about a left turn. They came from the summit and the route is just on the left of lip area. So, they was very close to the summer trail. As they went to Lyon head, the trail was on the right. Jackson talk about a 90 degree left hand turn.... For me, it is a mistake gave by a professional. Coming from Huntington ravine, Lyon head is on the left. But that most imply that they took the road. Which is a very long way. Maybe it was a 270 degree left turn?

A signs versus experiences...I will always follow experiences.  and I always consider the danger as extreme.     
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DLottmann

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #32 on: January 02, 2014, 12:03:51 PM »

Yes, avalanches are always dangerous. However their probability varies greatly through-out the season, day to day, and sometimes hour to hour...

The bulletin helps people figure out what the likelihood of an avalanche is on a given day... and to some extent the size and distribution of expected avalanche activity. It does not say "don't pay attention to changing conditions or use safe travel techniques (your mitigation thing)".

From every bulletin: "This advisory is just one tool to help you make your own decisions in avalanche terrain. You control your own risk by choosing where, when, and how you travel."
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JBrochu

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #33 on: January 02, 2014, 12:54:43 PM »

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Have a quiche, now, or maybe a tort.  You deserve it!
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lucky luke

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #34 on: January 04, 2014, 08:16:20 AM »


From every bulletin: "This advisory is just one tool to help you make your own decisions in avalanche terrain. You control your own risk by choosing where, when, and how you travel."

Avalanche victims fall prey to heuristic traps
because heuristics are simple to use and they have
proven themselves in other areas of daily life  ( http://www.snowpit.com/articles/traps%20reprint.pdf  )

It is just one tool...and what is the other? A sign is easy to follow...turn right, turn left... but not always reliable.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2014, 08:18:19 AM by lucky luke »
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DLottmann

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #35 on: January 06, 2014, 01:35:41 PM »

Tools:

Bulletin, Recognizing Human Factor's, Planning, Observing, Terrain Selection, Traveling Wisely.

Tools an AIARE course (from any provider) will give the back-country traveler:

AIARE Field Book- (Trip Plan and Field Ob pages for every tour)

DMF (Decision Making Framework)

Avalanche & Observations Reference Page (awesome for figuring out what is important to pay attention to based on the current "problem", i.e. Wind Slab, Storm Slab, Wet point Release, etc...)

Companion Rescue Quick Reference Card

Practice making these decisions and using these tools within small groups.

Find AIARE providers and more info on AIARE here:

http://avtraining.org/

See my very brief write-up of this past weekend's course here:

http://davidlottmann.wordpress.com/2014/01/06/aiare-1-avalanche-course-1214-1514/

Let's hope this rain turns back to snow soon!
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frik

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #36 on: January 06, 2014, 03:59:24 PM »

DMan; That stuff is all well and good, but you left off the single most important tool - a functioning brain.
All the avy training, bulletins etc. on the planet is of no use, if those dolts couldn't figure out which trail they took up, or couldn't be bothered to even bring a map with them.   
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DLottmann

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #37 on: January 06, 2014, 04:37:15 PM »

DMan; That stuff is all well and good, but you left off the single most important tool - a functioning brain.
All the avy training, bulletins etc. on the planet is of no use, if those dolts couldn't figure out which trail they took up, or couldn't be bothered to even bring a map with them.

Agreed, brain is most important. My post was a direct response to LL’s question “What other tools”, but you’re right. I’m trying not to judge them too harshly as a much younger me climbed Washington solo in the winter with probably the same amount of preparation (or lack of). In my case I was lucky. In their case they were luckier. All I can hope is the publicity their story stirred up has reached people who might think twice before trying something with potential dire outcomes without first seeking some solid skills/education/advice/etc.
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crazyt

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #38 on: January 06, 2014, 07:09:50 PM »

Living is dangerous, no one gets out alive.  Yup, these kids screwed up and got lucky. But, so have I and probably more than once. My guess is that so has everyone on this forum at some time. I've learned from my mistakes and try to learn thru the screw ups of others. Still doesn't mean the mountains won't get me.
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sneoh

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #39 on: January 06, 2014, 08:17:08 PM »

My guess is that so has everyone on this forum at some time. I've learned from my mistakes and try to learn thru the screw ups of others. Still doesn't mean the mountains won't get me.
So true, Tom.
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lucky luke

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Re: Avalanche on Mount Washington
« Reply #40 on: January 07, 2014, 12:09:44 PM »


Tools an AIARE course (from any provider) will give the back-country traveler:

Advertising???

tools, the small scale mountain in pinckam nothc, close to the store to know the denivellation, weather forecast and avy, clothes, boots and helmet for the season, maps and compass, cairn, crampon hiking stick, ice tool, rope, pack sack, workout to be in good shape, previous experience from small to biggest situation with experience climber with leadership,  etc.

all those tools most be know with a deep understanding. You most know that this jacket will keep you warm to minus 10, but it is better to have a real experience of a walk, a cross ski racing, follow by bird observation close to a house at minus 10 to know what will really keep your warm when you are wet by transpiration.

Of course, long terms learning is better than short time one. In school, kids remember ten percent of what they learned at the end of the year. So it is an Avycourses. If you don't have time, yes it is better than nothing.

But be aware: learning to follow a sign and how good is the advisory don't make you an expert to survive in winter. Always remember that an advisory is like a rating in a sleeping bag. If they said minus 18, that doesn't mean that you are not going to be freezing at night.   
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