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Jackson Hole avalanche 1-6-2010 - Page 2

post #31 of 71
bob, tjhe pic posted on TGR is an "official" picture, please check it out.
post #32 of 71
Wow -- we skied that area & the trees to the immediate left a bunch of times last year after Bob showed us the way to jump in just under those two small trees off Rendezvous Trail... one of my favorite runs.  I never even considered it could be the site of a slide...

Originally Posted by Bob Peters View Post

I have a photo that shows the crown and the track but I don't think I'm authorized to pass it on.  Once I see it somewhere online, maybe I can post it.  Until then, here's my VERY approximate diagram of the slide:

Yes, it really does make you stop to think.  I've literally skied that line hundreds of times.  Without all the work that Wally and his counterparts do, we skiers could be sitting ducks.

Everybody, please go thank a ski patroller the next time you're out on the hill.
post #33 of 71
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

bob, tjhe pic posted on TGR is an "official" picture, please check it out.

Not quite the same photo I received but very close.  It's a very sobering photo.  The slide ripped all the way to the ground above the cliff band and then set off a sympathetic below the band.  That's a big crown:

Picture of the slide. [credit jim springer, btnf avi crew/JHN&G]

While driving the Village road and riding lifts this morning, I could see the remains of MULTIPLE natural avalanches on northeast-facing aspects above 9500 feet.  There's a very big one that came off Four Shadows on Cody Peak.  There's a lot of rotten snow around and our weather the next few days isn't going to help that any.

And while trying not to be TOO much of a downer on the "Poach of the Year" thread, people here in JH were definitely poaching that exact line where Wally got slid in the days before that avalanche. 

Out here, "Closed Area" signs should be respected.
post #34 of 71
 One word.........
post #35 of 71
post #36 of 71
I just found the video from our trip where we skied the run to the left.  Definitely a reality check and I think I may be investing in a beacon in the future.
post #37 of 71
Reporting on TGR says that Wally passed away.

post #38 of 71
 This from the carepages
Hi Everybody,we just talked to the neuro doctor,sorry to keep you waiting so long, thats all we do over here is wait.This is very difficult to tell you but the big guy we love is at his end.He is going skiing with phee,doug,bentley dan mackay,and all his buddies who also left us too soon.we have a great group here and it really helps,were hurting.I hope you have somebody to hug too.love fish
post #39 of 71
I hope Big Wally makes it. About 50 percent of avalanche victims die from trauma and 50 percent die from suffocation. If he pulls through the medically induced coma he has a good chance.

There was an ex-patroller killed in Colorado, a 26 year vet at Aspen last season. He was out of bounds. It happened 12/15/08

The scary thing is the slope that Wally got hurt on doesn't look that steep. Thanks to those who posted pics.  
post #40 of 71
Much condolences to the family and to the crew at JH. I am truly saddened to hear of this.
post #41 of 71
 Truly sorry to to hear. I know I will have a "moment" when I go past there next week. 
post #42 of 71
Any update on Big Willy's condition ?

Bob, thanks for the photos. 

I must have skied through that slide path over 40 times.  One morning I had first tracks in Cheyne Bowl after 12 inches over night.  I stopped at the top and looked down the bowl with 6 others looking.   Everyone was thinking the same thing.  Why has nobody has skied it yet.  I jumped in first.  When I got to the bottom and turned around there was a heard of folks coming down the bowl.  One of my more memorable JH runs.  Now when I ski the bowl in about 3  weeks I will be thinking of Big Willy. 

I am also thinking about wearing a transceiver in bounds.  If nothing else I might be able to help find someone else. 

I am still praying for Big Willy. 

post #43 of 71
This is terrible news, I thought he was going to make it.  So sorry for the Jackson Hole community.  Prayers are with you all.
post #44 of 71
PJ As of Jan 8  patroller Mark Wolling is still in the ICU.  Do you have any more up to date information?
post #45 of 71
catskill, the statement on the care page seems to imply he wasn't expected to make it. I think the statements of him passing are premature, however. There hasn't been any official statement and sometimes a doctor's prognosis can be wrong.   
post #46 of 71
I think the implication is that Mark could not breathe without a ventilator, and that his loved ones had made a decision.
post #47 of 71
Someone needs to buy his partners a beer or fifty.  Digging him out from under six feet of snow and beginning revival procedures=freakin' awesome!  We should all hope to have partners like that.  

Sad day.  
post #48 of 71
thoughts for Wally and his friends, family, and colleagues.
post #49 of 71
Sat AM update from care pages:

Hi friends;One last note. Wally is an organ doner.He is still on life support as part of this process. We can't see him anymore and at some point soon they will take him off life support. The medical staff thought he will go fast after that.The out pouring of support from so many has greatly helped wally's family. They knew he had a lot of friends,but WOW!Also his other sister Pam got here late last night.Once again thank for all the incredible support.Mike
post #50 of 71
Everybody make some turns for this man.  When a patroler goes they truly do die for our sins and pleasures. 

Condolences to all of his family and friends.
post #51 of 71
Thread Starter 
Wally, Rest In Peace.

For those of you who haven't signed in to Carepages.com, here are some of the hundreds of messages of reminiscence, condolence,support, and love for Big Wally. I took out the last names so as not to identify anyone.

We should all be so lucky as to touch so many lives:


Posted 3 minutes ago

It has been many years since I knew Wally but used to ski with him and work with him at the Mangy Moose. He was a fun and kind soul and his loss is deeply felt. As the mother of a deceased son who was an organ donor, I've experienced the many unexpected blessings that come to the family of the one who gives the "gift of life." Wally will live on, and will bring joy to families who were looking for a miracle for their loved one. In a time of tragedy, it's hard to think that one family's loss can be another one's gain. The loss is unchangeable, the gain is a gift. Wally will be loved and appreciated by many more than who know him now. On behalf of the unknown families who will soon experience an answer to their prayers, thank you for choosing organ donation.

Posted 12 minutes ago

To Wally's family, You gave a beautiful gift to the world when you gave us Big Wally. His heart was as big as his physical presence and we will miss him terribly! Thankyou for sharing him with us and know that our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Big guy, Thankyou for your infectious smile and laughter and for always reminding us to enjoy life to the fullest and for teaching us all the meaning of giving, as you continue to do, even as you leave us. Keep spreading your Big Wally love as you move on to the other side of the mountain. We miss you and will always keep your spirit alive in our hearts.
Thinking of you, Marianne and Fish.

Posted 20 minutes ago

I wish it could be otherwise.

Posted 24 minutes ago

as sad is it is to lose Big Wally, it is comforting to know that his positive spirits will be passed on to others to live out his life. his smile, kind nature and love for life was inspirational to so many. it was great having him as a friend. we will miss you, Wally.

Posted 36 minutes ago

"I'd rather die while I'm living, than live while I'm dead...." Jimmy Buffet

Posted 57 minutes ago

I always loved Big Wally, even though we did not have a day to day friendship. I have known him since 1978 here. In the old days to the present whenever I was around him we all had a lot of fun. We always had a connection that was spoken knowingly in the eyes and smile, with a nod or a howdy. If you know Wally, you know just what I mean. He is one of those people that once you know him, you always know him. The truth of Wally was always open in his eyes. It is hard to believe this has happened to such a great person. And I feel his spirit will always carry on. He was always there for others like the Jimmy Zell function at his place--Goat Fest this year (I have 2 good photos from the fest for those that want them.. If you need a spirit friend, Wally is the kind that will always be there to help. Thanks Big Wally for all you have been to all of us!
Sending good thoughts and Mojo to Wally, all his family and close friends.
With great respect,
Wilson, Wyoming

Posted 1 hour ago

Sweet Blessings and heartfelt thoughts to ALL your family and friends.

Posted 1 hour ago

I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with Wally's family and loved ones during this incredibly difficult time.

Posted 1 hour ago

It is said that organ recipients experience changes in their life that are inexplicable except by some influence or spirit imparted to them from the person whose organs now live on within them. Wally's recipients may find themselves smiling broadly and living life fuller and more adventurous than they could ever have imagined. Way to go Wally!

Posted 2 hours ago

Heartfelt prayers go out to friend’s family and the JHSP. Any encounter with Big Wally was memorable whether brief or extended. His impact was big and he will be sadly missed.

Posted 2 hours ago

His heart is as big in death as it was in life. I hope the people who receive his organs get some of his vitality.

Posted 2 hours ago

We are sending prayers your way, such fond memories we have of our days with you in Jackson.
Victor and D.D.

Posted 2 hours ago

Our love to your family and friends, you will be missed.
Larry and Paula

Posted 2 hours ago

Wally- Ill never forget you trucking all your gear up Beaver last summer- over and over with your dog- so that you could launch the purple wing. I didn't know you that well- but I will definitely miss you and the energy you brought to me at launch so many times. I know your in a better place. God Bless- Colby

Posted 2 hours ago

I didn't know Big Wally, but I sincerely appreciate him and all of the patrollers who keep the slopes safe for the rest of us. It must give his family and extended family comfort to see this incredible outpouring of support from across the country. Big Wally will live on in the people whose lives he is yet again about to save, and in the hearts of those who loved him. Sincere condolences to his family and friends.

Posted 2 hours ago

Peace sweet man.I will never forget you

Posted 2 hours ago

Dear Wally - may the peace of the lord and the beauty of Jackson Hole be always with you. You will be missed by all who knew you. Our sympathy and prayers to your family and dear friends.
With Love, Herbie and Amy

Posted 2 hours ago

This is our daughter's first time working in Teton Village, and her first experience with a 'real' winter. This brutal side of a mountain winter has affected her deeply and all of us wish there was some way to turn the clock back and prevent the tragedy. Just from what I have read, I can see that Wally was the epitome of 'a good life', and in his 58 years probably 'lived more' than most of us would in 100! Thank you, Wally, for all you did for the safety of others, and for continuing to give life in your most precious of donations. We also would like to wish heart's ease to Wally's family and friends -

Posted 2 hours ago

Our hearts and prayers go out to the Wolling family. Bill and I have known Wally since the beginnings of paragliding in Jackson. We both thought he cheated death a few times and were sure he'd pull though this. We will miss Wally and his BIG smile. His big heart and spirit of generosity will live on through his organ donations.

Posted 3 hours ago

I met Big Wally when I fist began to fly nylon 15ish years ago, over the years we have ran into each other and he always had a smile on his face, always remembered my name even if it had been a few year. I was deeply saddened to hear a JH patrolman went down, then just today learned it was Wally. Thank you for all you did to keep skiers safe over the years, thank you for being part of an increadable community. The crew at POM will all miss you.

Posted 3 hours ago

Thank you Big Wally for loving the mountain and keeping people like me safe for so many years. Thank you for one last selfless act before you go. My thoughts and prayers are with Wally, his family, his friends, and the JH Mountain family.

Posted 3 hours ago

To my dear old friend Wally...I am so glad I got to spend time with you in October in Moab. The Universe works in mysterious ways and had brought us together one last time. This is so difficult for me and I am sure many others. We cannot imagine NOT having Big Wally in our lives. This is an event so sudden and so final, yet what an opportunity for those of us who have loved you so much to recognize the gift we have in life and with each other. Thanks so much for being my friend - I will see you on the other side when my own timing comes.

Posted 3 hours ago

Big Wally, who embodied generosity in life, continues to give of himself as he leaves us. With memories of his big smile and knowing how to live and give. Prayers for the family, and gratitude to those there who sent him on his way knowing he was loved.

Posted 3 hours ago

My deepest sympathy to The Big Man's family,friends and JHSP and everyone at the mountain.Beanpole

Posted 3 hours ago

Thinking of Wally and his family during this time. Go peacefully and live on in the memories and the gift of your organs to others. Gone too soon.

Posted 3 hours ago

Prayers for your family, gratitude for the wonderful life you lived, and blessings for the gift you are giving to others

Rachel and Brooks

Posted 3 hours ago

Thank you to Wally's family for allowing him to make this wonderful gift so that others will live on.

Posted 3 hours ago

His zeitgeist radiates extensively through the communities that he touched. Thank you Wally for being there to make our white playground a safer place all of those years.

Posted 3 hours ago

R.I.P Big Cat.


Posted 3 hours ago

Big Wally - Thank you so much for your dedication to protecting a community and it's visitors for so many years. Because of your dedication you touched the lives of many people by giving all of us the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of the Tetons. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Enjoy the slopes of heaven!

The ... Family (visitors from Philadelphia)

Posted 3 hours ago

A big guy with a bigger heart.
We love you Mark.
Wayne and Deb

Posted 3 hours ago

I did not know Big Wally, but I have skied Jackson Hole many times and I greatly appreciate all of the hard, life-threatening work that he did and other's continue to do. Please know that Mark, his friends and family are all in my thoughts and prayers. May God Bless you all. Natalie ..., Charlotte, NC

Posted 3 hours ago

Big Wally, good to know that you will live on in your BIG way, in the form of the gift of donation in another human being. May peace be with you as you journey to the other side. Laurie

Posted 3 hours ago

"Do not fear death so much, but rather the inadequate life."
Cheers to a live well lived.
Rest in peace, Wally. You will be missed but your legacy lives on.
Hugs, Meg

Posted 3 hours ago

Wally, while hiking and riding all your trails on Munger I'll be thinking of you. Thanks for all you have given our Jackson community and especially the Red Top community. Our hearts go out to your family, Marriana and all your wonderful friends. Happy Trails!

Posted 3 hours ago

Thanks for your gift of life for so many others Wally. Organ Donation is the finest thing a person can do. You are again a hero, saving lives.

Posted 3 hours ago

Wally thanks for living the "life" for the rest of us who loved watching from the sidelines. I will never forget your smile, your loving hugs. Thanks Fish, MaryAnne sending you all the love. XXOO Toni

Posted 3 hours ago

Not fade away our Big Wally...one foot here and one foot there

Posted 3 hours ago

Love and Light to All.............

Posted 3 hours ago

RPK and JHSP will never be the same -- ever. You go BIG, happy trails. Thanks fish. Bless you Maryanne.

Posted 3 hours ago

In support of Wally's immediate family and his second family, The Jackson Hole Patrol, our thoughts are with you.

On behalf of the Steamboat Patrol,

post #52 of 71
 Today we celebrate the life of Big Wally.
He surrounded himself with a circle of love and left impressions on the hearts of many.
These are the kind of footprints I want to leave behind me.
post #53 of 71

In memoriam: Big Wally by Jim Stanford

A reader pointed out that Wally died near the woods that bear his name, Wally World (see photo from previous post). David Gonzales, author of Jackson Hole: On a Grand Scale, a history of the resort, put it best in a Facebook post:

“While I was working on the Jackson Hole book, I asked Big Wally where Wally World was. His straightfaced reply: ‘Wally World’s not a place. It’s a state of mind, where the fun never stops and all your dreams come true.’”
post #54 of 71
post #55 of 71
RIP Wally
post #56 of 71
In the past 3 months, I've been to 2 funerals for husband/dad's who lived remarkable lives and left much, much too soon. Watching the pain of the family is gut wrenching. I'm not ashamed to say tears rolled down my eyes.

 I'll be in Jackson next week with many other Bears. The people of the mini-Epic gathering WILL honor him.

He died with his skis on and in the service of others. Too soon, too soon, but, a noble cause.

Rest in Peace
post #57 of 71
Sorry to hear the news.

RIP Wally

HB Family
post #58 of 71
Very sorry to hear this.  RIP Big Wally and may all the snow be soft for you in the hereafter.  Godspeed...
post #59 of 71
Thinking of his friends and family!  All the best to them.  Celebrate his life!

post #60 of 71
Paused beside the Wally World trail sign yesterday.  Karma to get buried at the bottom of the trail named after you.  Rest in Peace, Wally.
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