A Bit Of Misadventure Near Rohr Lake Jan 05 14 - Page 3 - ClubTread Community

User Tag List

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #31 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 01:35 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: guess, , .
Posts: 185
Default

Man, i'm not sure if i would have had the presence of mind to escape that.
brandonportcoquitlam is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #32 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 01:51 PM
Hittin' the Trails
 
matches's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: SouthWest, BC, Canada.
Posts: 28
Default

I'm sorry but somebody has to say it...
You should not have been in that area at this time of year without basic avalanche safety equipment and knowledge of how to use it properly. Major mistake - glad you guys were lucky and nobody was hurt!
matches is offline  
post #33 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 02:09 PM
Off the Beaten Path
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Port Moody, B.C., Canada.
Posts: 593
Default

Simon and Tim, I'm very glad you walked away from this. I was lucky enough to walk away from one a few years ago, and will never forget that surreal feeling of wondering about my chances as the snow slid quietly down the hill towards us. Thanks for the honest and fulsome report.
social climber is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #34 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 03:31 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: guess, , .
Posts: 185
Default

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by simonc

The view from our lunch spot.
That photograph is surreal
brandonportcoquitlam is offline  
post #35 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 04:52 PM
Off the Beaten Path
 
muskeeto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: vancouver, bc, Canada.
Posts: 612
Default

Glad your both OK. I just did day 1 of the Avi course at Seymour,our instructor said April will be a bad month, when this weak layer we have now becomes exposed.
muskeeto is offline  
post #36 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 05:13 PM
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Delta, British Columbia, Canada.
Posts: 137
Default

Simon (& Tim), I was just curious if either of you had taken any of the AST courses?

CraigH is offline  
post #37 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 05:16 PM
High on the Mountain Top
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Whistler, BC, Canada.
Interest: Exploring the Coast Mountains and surrounding ocean waters in all seasons.
Posts: 1,573
Default

First off, thanks for the clear, factual report, Simon. Glad you and Tim are safe and a little wiser.

For reference, a number of recent bulletins for the Duffey refer to tricky conditions on treeline and alpine slopes especially. The Western Cayoosh often gets periods of sunshine when areas further south do not. Because of the orientation of the northern boundary of Marriott and Rohr Basins, there is effectively a south-facing steep wall that collects much more insolation than one might expect for this time of year or this latitude. Any month of the winter can have these events, which create melt-freeze crusts and a perfect environment for the facetting process to occur, especially as temps drop precipitously on clear nights. In addition, open streams and lakes in the Duffey provide moisture to encourage surface hoar growth on top older snow surfaces between storms. Finally, many of the surfaces on these aspects can be quite smooth grassy slopes in the summer and do not provide very much in terms of anchorage for even shallow snowpacks.

I would be fairly confident that you did in fact trigger the avalanche. Settlements--accompanied with whumpfing--had been noted at these elevations in the recent past. Essentially, these are signs of a lateral failure within the snowpack that allows part of the pack to settle. What we can't see when we're travelling in such terrain is how far this failure travels. Under the conditions we currently have, a little more force on the snowpack could easily have propagated up the slope.

Forecasters struggle with how much to write about avalanche problems, understanding that not everyone will read through a bulletin. I'm not sure exactly which day you headed out, but the Friday bulletin for South Coast Inland included two avalanche problems and associated terrain and travel advice:



I would echo the poster who suggested consider taking an AST1 course. Not trying to grow my business, but suggesting that such instruction would likely improve your ability to plan for trips in avalanche terrain, understand better what actions and problems the bulletins are referring to, and make decisions about how terrain could be used to better your chances in that environment.

The fact that so many human-triggered avalanches occurred on the Duffey and Whistler Backcountry on those days would also confirm that avalanches are certainly possible when the avalanche danger is rated as "moderate".

If this comes across as "armchair quarter-backing" please just pm me and I'll take it down.

Again, glad to hear you are both safe...and thanks for sharing.
msulkers is offline  
post #38 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
Summit Master
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Vancouver BC
Interest: 10%
Posts: 5,022
Default

CraigH, Tim has taken courses, I have not. He also was carrying a shovel and probe.

Mitch, you have much knowledge of the area and conditions. I appreciate your input.

We did not hear any whumpfing noises before the slide happened (or at any other time during the day). The start of the slide was over 100m above us so it's interesting (somewhat alarming too) how foot falls could propergate upslope that far and possible have started the slide.

simonc is offline  
post #39 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 06:56 PM
Summit Master
 
Ryan.in.yaletown's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Van, BC, Canada.
Posts: 3,231
Default

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by simonc
...
The start of the slide was over 100m above us so it's interesting (somewhat alarming too) how foot falls could propergate upslope that far and possible have started the slide.

Propagation distances can be surprisingly far - a few hundred meters. See P.52 (69/107 of the pdf):
http://www.ucalgary.ca/asarc/files/a...nsonThesis.pdf

-Ryan
Ryan.in.yaletown is offline  
post #40 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 07:25 PM
Super Moderator
 
KARVITK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Abbotsford, B.C., Canada.
Interest: Hiking, Snowshoeing, and Photography. Enjoying the outdoors fresh air and fitness experience.
Posts: 17,919
Default

After reading your account once again, it reminds me how anything can happen to us roaming the hills. Happy luck was with you to spare you from serious injury or worse, to hike another day and continue to conquer those peaks..and produce this awesome reports.

K
KARVITK is offline  
post #41 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 07:35 PM Thread Starter
Summit Master
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Vancouver BC
Interest: 10%
Posts: 5,022
Default

Thanks Karl. One thing, I never use the work conquer. The mountain gods are usually kind enough to allow me up and then back down to allow me to bag the peak. Karma type thing.

Thanks for the link Ryan too.
simonc is offline  
post #42 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 08:26 PM
Summit Master
 
pmicheals's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Richmond, BC, Canada.
Posts: 2,674
Default

Nice to see both of you smiling post incident and good on you for posting the incident report. I have to agree with considerations posted by both Mitch and Sandy with Mitch providing more localized detail.

Simon my first thought was to agree that this was remotely triggered and from personal experience I personally tend to hear the whumph more noticeably on skis than on snowshoes if that helps you at all. In which case, route finding and reading the reports and trends becomes more important.

The snowshoes have a tendency to break through the layer quicker as opposed to skis riding on top; the difference between gliding and stomping. But for everyone it could be different. A few years back I heard evidence of a more definite whumphing on the Ridge heading towards Mt. Steele and observed the remnants of a 1.5 after passing a small drainage on the return trip from our traverse.

Mitch correct me if I'm wrong but this is a known starting area for larger slides that can travel well into the trees towards the trail? A clear example being Alex's photo showing just how far this slide ran. You would not see what you were walking towards if the conditions were different.

My own thought on this is had you traversed farther towards the Tree ridge may not have helped you much given the possibility of it being remotely triggered. You would still be dissecting and crosscutting the slope. JMHO

Happy, happy, happy for the positive outcome and a reminder to all of us of what looms much higher above us on even a low to moderated day.

pmicheals is offline  
post #43 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 08:35 PM
Summit Master
 
pmicheals's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Richmond, BC, Canada.
Posts: 2,674
Default

One of the valuable outcomes of this lesson and the resulting detailed information was the good feedback as to the remotely triggered distances involved relative to the propagation and size. Doesn't help much though when you suddenly become the subject of the field results.
pmicheals is offline  
post #44 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 09:39 PM
High on the Mountain Top
 
dougz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Mackenzie, BC, Canada.
Interest: hiking, skiing, camping, SAR, Canadian Rangers (army reserve)
Posts: 1,515
Default


Wow, I really need to take an avalanche course..

I had no idea, for example, that Iago would be considered avalanche territory (I went with Karvitk in Dec).

Makes one think!

Glad you both are ok.
dougz is offline  
post #45 of (permalink) Old 01-08-2014, 10:12 PM
Summit Master
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Vancouver, BC, .
Posts: 5,612
Default

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by dougz


Wow, I really need to take an avalanche course..

I had no idea, for example, that Iago would be considered avalanche territory (I went with Karvitk in Dec).
There were one or two brief spots where I looked down below us and kind of wondered. I'm very conservative about where I'm willing to go in winter. I need to take that course again too.
wilderness_seeker is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome
 

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.1