I think it's pretty obvious where TheDad skis considering his location is Olympic Valley, CA. Clearly he spends the majority of his time at Soda Springs.
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- categoryAvalanche Safetytagged by System, 12/27/12
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- Slough Management
Inbounds avy stuff - Page 11
What is obvious also is that someone won't answer a direct but polite question.
And you have to wonder why?
Moderator Note: Edited for bunion since it was outside the two hour editing window.
CTKook: I'm asking for credentials. Since you don't even identify where you live or ski in your profile, it's difficult to assess your knowledge. Your posts make it sound as thought your knowledge is entirely secondhand, at best.
Another analogy: I'm a technology lawyer who focuses on computers. (It says that, more or less, in my public profile.) You talk about avalanches and avalanche mitigation technology the way that a business guy or lawyer talks about computers, rather than the way that a electrical engineer or computer scientist does. Now, I've got no problem with lawyers and business guys talking about computers -- I'm one, and I talk a lot. But if I want to know how some aspect of a computer works, I talk to EEs and CSes, not lawyers.
Further disclosures: I have my Avy I, would've pursued my Avy II this year but for conflicts with work and my kids' race schedules, and as you can surmise from every post I've made, I ski almost exclusively in the Sierra Nevada, mainly at Alpine Meadows. I will admit to some degree of bias, as I've knocked back beers with Bunion and others at ISSW, after being introduced to him by Telemike from TGR, who is a good friend and another avy pro. I also know Bunion's credentials, and I know that he puts his body on the line every day. That counts for a lot with me, and probably a lot of others here. I also see posts like his, a few back, where he explicitly states that he thinks that airbags will be standard issue within 3-5 years, and see someone who's actively thinking through an evolving calculus.
Your posts, by contrast, show someone who has already made up his mind. Any new evidence or suggestion is massaged to fit your argument. Again, I'm familiar with this pattern -- as I mentioned, I'm a lawyer -- but find it unpersuasive.
The evidence on the subject of airbags is equally available to desk jockeys and patrol professionals, and it's the same regardless of who's looking at it. (For the record I am not a professional, and I've never been in an avalanche, although I did have one go by me a few feet over). A professional patroller would certainly be in a better position to judge the significance of the extra weight, and the CFO of KSL or Vail would be in a better position to assess the cost. The couple of patrollers I've spoken to who were using airbags thought they were a good idea, although they did mind the weight. Whether they were being candid with someone they didn't know I can't say. I'm more interested in whether the resort makes airbags available to patrollers then whether individual patrollers wear them, although as Bunion points out if they are available it's almost certainly going to be a matter of resort policy or regulation who wears one when. One might ask what business of mine is it what ski patrol does. My son was a patroller, but not any more. More to the point 2 patrollers have died so that I can have a good time, I think it's my obligation, and the obligation of all of us to advocate for the safety and well being of ski patrol. Lord knows they don't get paid near enough for the risks they take.
I would like to add that calling someone an insect is not what I would expect from anyone who calls themselves a professional of anything.
And calling oneself a Kook or and Old Goat is?
I have very little tolerance for armchair QBs who want to make for me decisions based upon studies.
If Kook had any real world experience (we really don't know, do we?) I would be more respectful however respect is a commodity that is earned.
To this point with the utter shit that has been posted by said Kook concerning avalanches inbounds, the wisdom of wearing a beacon inbounds or carrying a shovel or a probe while skiing inbounds they can have their opinions and be happy with them.
I am not here to impress anyone with my professionalism, I do so by my actions at my job and by my past safety record.
In my world the epithet "insect" is extremely mild, had I used the terminology I would use face to face with Kook I would probably be banned.
However I apologize if I offended anyone who is allergic to bugs.
Edited by bunion - 2/28/13 at 6:29pm
Keep in mind that while we all spout off about skiing related matters because it's our hobby, for some here it's their career. I understand the indignation - if someone talked to me about my industry in that way with what appeared to be very little real world first-hand experience I'm sure I would have snapped much sooner.
I call myself retired, not professional any more. Besides, it's my kids who called me Old Goat. I have the sweatshirt to prove it.
But seriously--in my (previous) profession--surgery--I always got nervous when I heard someone say they were going to ignore the studies and go by their experience. In the case of avalanches personal experience may be particularly overrated--there was a lot of discussion about this after the Tunnel Creek avalanche last season, in particular--about how very experienced skiers made bad decisions, perhaps in part because their extensive experience of not being killed in an avalanche gave them a false sense of security. But you only get to be killed by an avalanche once.
I certainly respect you and what you do. I thought what you said in post 300 made a lot of sense. But I learned in my profession that I ignored people with less experience and training than me at my peril (or more precisely, at the peril of my patients). There's one surgeon I helped train over twenty years ago who still reminds me of an appendix we should have taken out when he wanted me to, not after it ruptured.
I think part of the division is that Bunion is talking about real-world experience in how avalanches work. CTKook is making observations about percentages.
Bunion's goal (I may be out of line here, and if so I apologize to him) is to avoid BEING CAUGHT in an avalanche altogether. He has solid and practical reasons for not wanting the extra weight (and pack volume) while he works. He's paid his dues in understanding what his work environment calls for.
CTKook comes across (sorry, but this is how it sounds to me) as a more clinical, outside observer. Maybe he has the practical experience, maybe not - I can't tell. But where he seems to be going all the time is recommending airbags and posting the "proof" to back up the recommendation. What he seems to not quite get (again, I could be completely wrong but that's my impression) is that my goal is to AVOID being caught in an avalanche in the first place.
I don't want to ever NEED an airbag and I conduct myself in avalanche terrain with that in mind. If I ever NEED one, then I've failed miserably several steps back in the process.
I don't think anyone here really argues the concept that if I have to be caught in an avalanche, I'd much rather have a bag. I just believe from the real-world backcountry scene I see here every day that airbags make some (many?) people more willing to ski something they wouldn't if they weren't bagged.
Bob, you nailed my thinking spot on.
Not getting caught in the 1st place is at the top of my list.
Escaping when things go badly is # 2.
Having to rely on ABS, avalungs or a partner rescue is a distant 3rd.
I think the horse has been thoroughly flayed by now.
Got to ski with Elkins & Humphries and a bunch of other old warhorses as well as a bunch of Young Turks starting their Patrol Director careers yesterday and was able to show off our respective mountains.
Snowed another 6" today and supposed to snow again tonight. As much as I dislike the cold dark and windy month of January, February has been very kind.
Those coming for the Epic gathering are in for a treat.
- Inbounds avy stuff
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