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Huge avalanche taking away lift

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

It;s a strange winter in the Alps. Lot's of snow. At the moment it is warming up.

See the result. Also pay attention to the people still sitting in this lift.

 

http://youtu.be/BJXVfb-byhc

 

 

post #2 of 24

Holy Crap!

 

That is amazing.  I can't believe the liftie didn't hit "stop" while all that was going on.

 

On another note, I think we'll see all kinds of those slides around the northern Rockies whenever we finally get a few days of sunshine and warm temps.  I think we have a VERY weak snowpack in places and it's just a ticking time bomb waiting for a little thermal loading.

post #3 of 24

Not only was the lift still running, but people were pulling up to the bottom of the lift while the towers were being crunched.  Must happen all the time, no big deal, I can outrun it.......

 

Sure, it was a slow moving avalanche, but still, I'd be putting some space between me and that thing.

post #4 of 24
post #5 of 24

That has got to be the weirdest slide I have ever seen.  In both videos nobody is the least bit concerned.  Nobody is looking for victims, even though it is very wide and lots of tracks go right into it.  Bizarre in every way.  Reminds me of a giant late spring slushvalanche, except for the slush part. Interesting seeing the billiard table smooth layer under the slide and the previous slide on the right side in the second video.

 

 

post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Peters View Post

Holy Crap!

 

That is amazing.  I can't believe the liftie didn't hit "stop" while all that was going on.

 

 


They don't need no stinkin' lifties in Europe!

 

I wonder how long those guys sat on the lift before opting to go for the drop? It didn't look THAT high. 

.

post #7 of 24

^^^^^^

 

Not that high up, and the stuff is probably pretty soft...

post #8 of 24

Slide was in a closed area and of course ran into an open piste.  41 people were evacuated from the lift after it stopped (either by lowering or helicopter).  Dropping from a chair onto groomed piste is not an option (unless you are desperate for a meeting with an orthopedic surgeon)

post #9 of 24

Holy crap is right.  I've never seen anything like that before.

 

I'm staying inbound for several days, before even considering back country here in the Wasatch.  There's plenty for me to play inbound. There is definitely a faceted layer, thus making many places unstable.

 

Make your your assessments are beyond good. Be careful out there.

post #10 of 24

Just incredible, caught on camera

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJXVfb-byhc

 

It amazes me how slow, but unstoppable it is.

It's been super hot here. In two weeks we've gone from mimus 20 C, to plus16

 

post #11 of 24

OMG, I watched it again and saw people on the chair lift as it's happening.

post #12 of 24

There is already another thread on it here- plus a video taken from the lift:

 

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/111025/huge-avalanche-taking-away-lift

 

 

 

post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Peters View Post
That is amazing.  I can't believe the liftie didn't hit "stop" while all that was going on.

 

I thought this as well at first.  However, there are some advantages to keeping it running.  As long as people stopped getting on, keeping it running would allow as many people as possible to unload.

 

This could have ended very poorly.  It's great that it appears that everyone got out safe.

post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post


They don't need no stinkin' lifties in Europe!

 

I wonder how long those guys sat on the lift before opting to go for the drop? It didn't look THAT high. 

.


Camera depth of focus takes out the perspective.  It could have been much too high to jump without serious damage.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by SpikeDog View Post

Not only was the lift still running, but people were pulling up to the bottom of the lift while the towers were being crunched.  Must happen all the time, no big deal, I can outrun it.......

 

Sure, it was a slow moving avalanche, but still, I'd be putting some space between me and that thing.



 



Quote:
Originally Posted by steve2222 View Post

 

I thought this as well at first.  However, there are some advantages to keeping it running.  As long as people stopped getting on, keeping it running would allow as many people as possible to unload.

 

This could have ended very poorly.  It's great that it appears that everyone got out safe.


Also it allowed people in the lower chairs to clear the most impacted area.

 

I guess whoever decided to close that run was right.

 

post #15 of 24
Thread Starter 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Peters View Post

Holy Crap!


Exactly what I was thinking!

About five weeks ago Daphne and I skied there...

We already saw a lot of those slights on the surrounding mountains. It is indeed a strange year. In Europe as well in large parts of the US as far as I can judge from here.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpikeDog View Post

Not only was the lift still running, but people were pulling up to the bottom of the lift while the towers were being crunched.  Must happen all the time, no big deal, I can outrun it.......

 

Sure, it was a slow moving avalanche, but still, I'd be putting some space between me and that thing.


I would have skied away, soon and fast. But that's how many people are, when there are others watching then hey, it's safe to be there...

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post

Also it allowed people in the lower chairs to clear the most impacted area.

 

Smart!
 

 

post #16 of 24

eek.gif

post #17 of 24
post #18 of 24

Amazing, happy no one got hurt.

post #19 of 24

Wow.  That's amazing.  The way the avalanche included all of the snow down to the soil is amazing - the hillside looks like it was scraped clean of vegetation and rocks.

 

The pictures made me think of the 2009 Landslide / Avalanche that took out the Keechalus lift at the Hyak (Summit East) ski area in Washington in 2009.  It was a slide that scraped the hill clean when a warm "pineapple express" rainstorm (bands of warm wet rain from Hawaii which are the bane of all skiers in the Northwest) dumped over 10 inches of rain on the slope in a day.  Nobody was hurt, and nobody was on the hill.  If I recall they had shut down the ski area (10 inches of rain will do that.)  Some unlucky people had extensive damage to their homes.

 

summit_east_lift2.jpg

post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmaie View Post

Not that high up, and the stuff is probably pretty soft...


 

Any avalanche debris I've ever had the displeasure of skiing through has been basically ice boulders. 

post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post


 

Any avalanche debris I've ever had the displeasure of skiing through has been basically ice boulders. 


Same for me...
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post


 

Any avalanche debris I've ever had the displeasure of skiing through has been basically ice boulders. 



Ice boulders are what we used to have for freestyle jump landing zones on really cold nights... after chopping up the bulletproof refrozen ice with the tails of our skis. 

post #23 of 24

This is what's called a 'Mass Wasting' event. Avalanches are one kind, landslides are another.

 

There was one at a ski area in WA a few years ago.

 

It's even more spooky to see earth, trees, shrubbery and buildings moving in slow motion.

post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phlogiston View Post

This is what's called a 'Mass Wasting' event. Avalanches are one kind, landslides are another.

 

There was one at a ski area in WA a few years ago.

 

It's even more spooky to see earth, trees, shrubbery and buildings moving in slow motion.


Seen that in here (Southern Italy actually, and was shown on the telly) a couple of years ago. An entire "hillside" took off...
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