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Can you suffocate to death after falling in deep powder? - Page 2

post #31 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by segbrown View Post

well, sometimes things just happen ... I double ejected after skiing under a tree branch last year in Tahoe ... luckily I had enough momentum that I scorpioned -- which hurt my back a little, but it helped me flip over to face up. I wasn't in danger because friends were skiing behind me -- friends with cameras at the ready, ahem, bumpfreaq ;-) -- but it was food for thought: one of my arms augured in straight down, and it would have taken me a while to free myself. 


That is so true. Once my skis hit something hidden under 3' of new and stopped dead in my tracks. I double ejected and as my boots went over my head I had time to think: flip all the way over, spread out, become buoyant. I ended up lying on my back, feet downhill, in that make an angel position, floating on top of the wet powder. I gradually got my feet down while keeping my head up and started to pack snow into a platform. Damn, it was right under the lift and friends saw me working there for a couple runs.

post #32 of 33

I'll add my anecdote as it doesn't even have to be anything too special.  A few years ago at Snowbird, Upper Bassackwards had been closed for a few days because they were continuously blasting the bowl above it because of a high avy danger.  Late in the afternoon, I got to the top of Gad 2 and saw they had dropped the rope across the entrance to Backasswards.  Was one of the first ones down and it was deep.  But also a fairly typical intermediate run.  Well, I double ejected and as others have described, I found myself head straight down and buried to my waist with my boots sticking up in the air.  It happened to be on a little steep pitch and I managed to get my legs going downhill with enough momentum to sort of flip me out.  But I could see how easy it would be to do that and not be able to get.  For me, there were a lot of people around, so hopefully someone would have helped. But if it had been in a more out of the way place...  Still, extricating myself completely wore me out and it was all I could do after that to clean the snow out of everything and get back to the bottom.  I probably took 15 minutes before I had enough energy again to even try and get started again.

post #33 of 33

You know how people skid around an empty parking lot to get the feel of traction?  I will say that some experimentation with your ski buddies on inverted falls would help to avoid panic and sudden exhaustion, if you lack that experience in the field.

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