Colorado Urges Extra Caution in Backcountry: State Experiencing Once-in-a-Decade Dangerous Avalanche Conditions
Know the snow conditions before you go, avoid avalanche terrain
DENVER, CO (STL.News) Snowstorms in the Rocky Mountains and avalanches happen all the time, however, this season’s exceptionally weak snowpack is proving to be exceptionally dangerous – which poses deadly consequences if people are in the wrong place at the wrong time.
For anyone venturing into Colorado’s backcountry this year, Governor Polis, Colorado Avalanche Information Center and others strongly advise elevated safety precautions, as an unstable snowpack is causing an increase in avalanche activity and more dangerous avalanches than we see in a typical year. So far, eight Coloradans have lost their lives in avalanches this season. Nationally, between the weeks for January 30 and February 7, there have been 15 confirmed fatalities from avalanches, the most avalanche-related fatalities in a seven-day period since 1910.
“Due to our dry fall and cold temperatures, the backcountry is extremely dangerous right now, as evidenced by record deadly avalanches that have tragically taken eight Coloradans this year. Be cautious and careful. As we head into the Presidents Day weekend with Coloradans heading to our mountains, everyone must be prepared to take extra precautions and check the avalanche forecast, particularly if your plans include traveling into Colorado’s backcountry,” said Governor Jared Polis.