Backcountry awareness to be topic in Aspen | AspenTimes.com

Backcountry awareness to be topic in Aspen

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN – It will soon be time for backcountry skiers to start pondering avalanche conditions, and there are plenty of tools to help them.

A skiers’ group called Powder to the People will host a meeting Friday, Dec. 11, in Aspen to discuss how winter is shaping up in the backcountry as well as tools and training available to prepare for snowslides.

The meeting will be from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the Rio Grande Commons, formerly the Aspen Youth Center. The event will feature a presentation by Bruce Edgerly, vice president and co-founder of Backcountry Access, a manufacturer of snow safety equipment. Edgerly will demonstrate the company’s new Float 30 avalanche airbag and Tracker2 beacon. More information on the company is available at http://www.backcountryaccess.com.

Brian McCoy of the Colorado Avalanche Information Center will give a presentation on the backcountry conditions, the avalanche outlook for the winter and helpful hints on safe backcountry travel.

Questions from the audience will be encouraged. The event is the first of three presentations during the season at which expert guest speakers will share their knowledge.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center – at http://avalanche.state.co.us/index.php – is always available for updates on conditions. The website has been redesigned this year, with a color-coded map of conditions in Colorado’s mountains. Someone browsing the site can move their mouse over a zone and get a detailed assessment of conditions.

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The avalanche danger on Thursday for the Aspen zone was low overall with pockets of moderate danger above treeline on slopes facing north, northeast, east and southeast. Human-triggered avalanche are possible in those pockets, according to the information center.

The high ground around Aspen picked up between 2 and 5 inches of snow on Wednesday.

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