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First avi story of the season?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/21492390/detail.html


Can anyone recommend a good beacon and gear for a good "essentials" setup?
post #2 of 10
Well, first off, it's not the first avi event of the season. There have been three that I am aware of so far.

Secondly, I don't advise anyone to buy a transceiver and gear until AFTER they have completed the requisite training. You do not want the temptation.

After that it comes down to preferences. Personally, I still use an analog Ortovox. Reliable and good range. Digital will be easier to use, and if money is no object, go for the S1.

Probes - find a sturdy one. Shovels, go for metal over lexan.

A pack I like is the new dynafit that allows you to load your skis without shedding your pack.
post #3 of 10
Great topic to be thinking about & discussing.

There have actually been a couple of other "incidents" and  interesting trips already.  Check out these threads at TGR:  http://www.tetongravity.com/forums/showthread.php?t=171124 and http://www.tetongravity.com/forums/showthread.php?t=172614 and http://www.tetongravity.com/forums/showthread.php?t=173326- among others. Worthy reading.

The places to start:

1) Take an Avy 1 class. 

2) Read stuff.  Check out the slide zone at TGR. Check out www.avalanche.org, www.beaconreviews.com, www.wildsnow.com, http://avalanche.state.co.us/index.php, and so on. Go to Amazon & snag Staying Alive..., etc...

3) Get connected to informed, experienced, good people.

There are a ton of good equipment options. None of which matter one whit without the right knowledge & companions. Mostly it makes me pretty cowardly. In a good way... I think.

After some reading, preferably a class, and some messing about, you'll sort your equipment opinions appropriately.
post #4 of 10

After some reading, preferably a class, and some messing about, you'll sort your equipment opinions appropriately.
 

No surprise, I bought the transceiver I trained with in my first class.  The best unit is the one you know how to use and practise with.
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by iWill View Post

Secondly, I don't advise anyone to buy a transceiver and gear until AFTER they have completed the requisite training. You do not want the temptation.
 

Really?  I'm just starting to gather equipment, and am planning on a level 1 class this winter.  I do not plan to go out until after I've done that, but your advice doesn't seem like the best idea to me, mainly because of this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by newfydog View Post

No surprise, I bought the transceiver I trained with in my first class.  The best unit is the one you know how to use and practise with.

If you're going to buy a beacon and take a Level 1 class, wouldn't it be great to actually have the beacon you're going to carry regularly for the class?  That way you can practice and get familiar with that specific model of beacon while you have instructors there to help?  That definitely seems like a better way to go, IMO.
post #6 of 10
You'll need to have a beacon at your avi class.  If you are already locked in on the one you are going to get then you might as well buy it.  If not, rent a beacon and take the class.  Definitely go digital over analog, digital beacons are easier to locate with and quicker overall.  I know some analog guys who'll argue that.  I also know some of the best guys in the biz and they have always smoked analog users in a search with their digital beacons.  

On the flip side, analogs are tried and true and if you are comfortable with them, plenty of lives have been saved using an analog beacon.  For the first timer though, just go digi.  As has been said, the best beacon is the one you know how to use.
post #7 of 10
As far as avalanches this year.  The one listed in the link is the eighth one this season in Colorado, that we know about.  CAIC has the rundown. Kind of a scary start, I really hope this doesn't become a nightmare of a season.
post #8 of 10
Even when taking all the precautions and having the knowledge and experience there's still a risk factor I imagine. Prolly a sickly feeling having your skis pulled out from under you with a sea of snow freight training on top of you.
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaobrien6 View Post

Really?  I'm just starting to gather equipment, and am planning on a level 1 class this winter.  I do not plan to go out until after I've done that, but your advice doesn't seem like the best idea to me, mainly because of this:

My experience has shown me that a large number of people buy transceivers, and don't get the training. Many INTEND to get the training, but it ends up being inconvenient...and it is sorely tempting to get out there. Further, the actual operation of the transceiver isn't rocket science, it is the procedures involved in conducting a search that you need to learn. The difference between learning with a BCA Tracker and using a Ortovox Patroller is absolutely negligible.
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaobrien6 View Post


If you're going to buy a beacon and take a Level 1 class, wouldn't it be great to actually have the beacon you're going to carry regularly for the class? 

 

The class I took did not require you to own a transceiver....they had a pile of loaners, and it was good to have the same model as the instructors and other students.  I liked the units so I bought one. 

If you want to practice before, and have some people to work with (you need two units, or preferrable, more to practice, and someone to hide them), then get one before your class.  You might ask what they recommend.
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