Daily Archives: February 21, 2011

Of Emerald Lake and Avalanches

Emerald Lake - Click to Enlarge

We’re back! We had a really good trip in Field – thank you for all the good wishes. We got back safely and didn’t get in any avalanches (thankfully!) while skiing.

I mention avalanches as this year has been an incredible year for them in the Canadian Rockies given the amount of snow they have received in the past few months – including numerous fatalities. I’m really grateful that we didn’t have to use the avalanche safety gear we borrowed from my parents! If you’re planning on going skiing/snowmobiling/some activity in the mountains, PLEASE be safe, have the necessary gear and listen to the warnings given by the authorities! Then we all can avoid needless fatalities caused by adrenaline and stupidity.

In one of the video games Mr. Bean plays, the main characters get caught in an avalanche and are knocked out. One character saw this and went and got someone else to come rescue them. Once they became conscious, the saving character commented “Well, if it wasn’t for me, you’d still be eating snow!” to which I replied “No, they’d be dead!” (I have such a way with cunning retorts, don’t I?) I’m by no means an expert on avalanches, but I do know that if someone is caught in one, they have 3 – 5 minutes to be rescued and that once the avalanche has stopped moving, it sets up like concrete, which is incredibly difficult to move or shovel through, so you really can’t take your sweet time!

I bring all this up as there was an avalanche just over a week ago at one of the places we skied to – Emerald Lake. According to some reports, the avalanche caused the ice to break all the way to the bridge (the thing in front of the cabin on the right) and completely wiped out part of the ski trail around the lake. Thankfully this one was at night so no one was injured! When we arrived, this is what it looked like:

Click for Larger Photo

It’s pretty impressive as it wiped out all the trees on the way down – I guess you can’t expect anything less when the avalanche is going to the end of its run!

Now that I’ve said what I want to – go out, be safe, have fun and enjoy God’s beautiful creation! I’m getting off my soap box now. 😉

I’ll have more pictures from our trip up later this week! I’m just REALLY happy with the photo I took of Emerald Lake – I almost want to make it into a postcard or something!

What was the most exciting thing that happened to you this weekend?

If you’re interested in learning more about avalanches, you can take this online avalanche course.

This photo has been submitted to Give me your best shot, Photo Story Friday and Skywatch Fridays.

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