Posts Tagged ‘USFS’

Snow Safety on Mt. Washington


Helping to keep Climbers, Skiers and Hikers Safer on Mt. Washington, NH, USA
Chris Josen of the US Forest Service is one of a small group of avalanche forecasters and safety personnel on Mount Washington’s east side, where Tuckerman’s Ravine sees thousands of backcountry skiers per season. Not all come well equipped or knowledgeable about how to safely travel in the winter snow-scape. Learn more about what Chris does on Mt. Washington, the highs and lows, and what motivates him.

Online Avalanche Education


Interactive Avalanche Education Online
From Backcountry Magazine,
By Lance Riek

Fracture Zone- Avalanche

Whether you’re just beginning to learn about avalanches, or you want to clean out the summer cobwebs, the American Avalanche Association online tutorial is the place to start,” says Doug Abromeit, director of the National Avalanche Center.

The interactive avalanche awareness tutorial, developed by the Sawtooth Avalanche Center forecaster Chris Lundy, is now online at The click-through, online tutorial covers the basics of indentifying unstable snow and avy terrain, how to travel safely, and how to perform a rescue. There are guidelines for avalanche class organization and progression, and a list of course providers and locations.

Care to dig deeper?  The U.S. Forest Service website, provides information on analyzing stability, performing stability tests, and decision-making to stay safe in avalanche country.

Editor’s Note: Backcountry Magazine is a long-standing publication which we recommend because of its focus on human-powered skiing rather than lift-served, the latter which  is…way passé. I’ve been reading the magazine for years.

Mountain Spirit Institute Founder R. Richards is certified  Avalanche Level II training and a certified Level II backcountry ski guide with PSIA-I.  Some of his training was under the legendary Alan Bard, in Bishop California,  and Richards has taken the AMGA Ski Guides Course among other trainings. He’s a 20+ year “individual member” of the American Mountain Guides Association.
Image: From How Stuff Works, courtesy NOAA