Sunday, 25 January 2009

Sobering thoughts

Few British mountain goers can have missed the tragic news of yesterday when a large group of people were avalanched in Coire na Tulaich on the Buachaille and, unfortunately, 3 were killed.
Its been a while since we had this volume of snow and with increasing numbers of people visiting the hills in winter its easy for us collectively to 'forget' that black spots like this can be very dangerous. The SAIS forecast is an excellent service, blogs like this one can give some information about conditions, but an hour of thaw or snow, moving a hundred metres from where you dug your pit to assess the slope, a few degrees change in aspect or a hidden terrain feature can all put us in harms way. IF you feel you have a gap in your knowledge and want to learn more something like the workshops on avalanche awareness at the Fort William Mountain Festival or one of the Avalanche courses at Glenmore Lodge (have you tested yourself with this excellent quiz) could make a difference to your undersanding of avoiding becoming the victim of an avalanche.

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