Library corner: District offers free avalanche awareness info
Director of Public Services
Avalanche and snow safety resources at GCLD
• The ABCs of Avalanche Safety by Sue A. Ferguson
• Avalanche Safety for Skiers & Climbers by Tony Daffern
• Backcountry Avalanche Awareness by Bruce Jamieson
• Backcountry Skiing Berthoud Pass: A Guidebook to Skiing and Snowboarding Berthoud Pass, Colorado by Jordan Lipp
• Snow Sense: A Guide to Evaluating Snow Avalanche Hazard by Jill A. Fredston
• Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain by Bruce Tremper
Do you recreate in the backcountry? Side country? Would you like you and your kids to make smart outdoor choices this winter? The Fraser Valley Library is once again hosting Know Before You Go, a free avalanche awareness program at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 6.
The temptation to duck a rope, go out of bounds, or even start exploring on Berthoud Pass is real for locals who have been skiing as long as they can remember. In most cases, their skiing and riding ability far outweighs their avalanche knowledge, which can lead to trouble. That is what Know Before You Go (KBYG) aims to address.
During the hour-long KBYG program, participants will see the power of avalanches, when and why they happen, how people get in trouble, and the basics of how to avoid them, all through the eyes of avalanche professionals, pro athletes, accident victims and rescuers, and their peers. The program doesn’t preach, and it doesn’t tell skiers, snowboarders, and snowmobilers to stay home—instead, they are encouraged to get some education to get out and have fun safely. It is an introduction, however, not a comprehensive class.
This year’s program will be hosted again by Jamie Wolter through the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. Wolter is a Grand County local and has been an avalanche educator since the early 1990s.
According to Wolter, KBYG “raises awareness of avalanche hazards and rescue, and provides additional educational opportunities for people who want to recreate in the snow-covered mountains that surround Grand Country and the state of Colorado.”
While the program is geared toward teens, adults and preteens are also welcome, as anyone who explores the outdoors in Grand County during the winter season may benefit from this valuable and potentially life-saving information. The unprecedented number of avalanches in Colorado earlier this year—hundreds in March 2019 alone—makes the importance of avalanche safety for everyone even more apparent.
At the end of the program, attendees will also get to meet members of the Winter Park Ski Patrol Dog Team and will learn about the avalanche dog program at Winter Park Resort.
No registration is required for this free program, but seating is limited. Learn more at http://www.gcld.org.
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