In-depth avalanche talk educates locals
December 15, 2016
Backcountry snow-sports enthusiasts had a unique opportunity to learn about avalanche safety Wednesday night at the Winter Park Pub. Jordan Copenhafer, a representative from Friends of Berthoud Pass (FOBP), gave a great presentation about the dangers that lurk in Colorado's backcountry. While the presentation was not an Avalanche Level 1 certification class, it provided great insight into the knowledge and experience skiers need to go into the backcountry safely.
Copenhafer, who is an engineer by day and a volunteer for FOBP by night (and days off), showed a presentation that involved slides, photos, and video. Many of the photos and videos were actually from Berthoud Pass, and pointed out dangerous areas that see a large number of skiers on any given day.
Copenhafer spoke to a full house at Winter Park Pub and engaged the audience with questions by showing photos and asking where the danger areas were on various slopes. There were several videos shown of real-life avalanche incidents, not necessarily to scare the audience, but to show how easily things can go wrong in remote backcountry areas.
FOBP does an on-snow class that takes place on Berthoud in real backcountry territory. The classes take place on Jan. 21-22, 2017, but Copenhafer stressed that the classes tend to fill up quickly.