Find the beacon |

Find the beacon

Aspen Times Staff Report
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” On Sunday, is hosting its inaugural local beacon search competition on top of Aspen Mountain.

Transceiver competitions are tradition­al at other ski areas and are a good way to hone essential backcountry search skills. In this event, two-person teams race against the clock to locate and recover buried avalanche transceivers over the course of two heats: the first with a single buried transceiver and the second with two buried beacons.

The combined time for recovering all three beacons will determine the winner. In between heats, Aspen Mountain ski patrollers will give an avalanche dog search and rescue demonstration, while will demonstrate the use of the Richmond Ridge Beacon Basin.

A check-in table will accept last-minute registrations at upper Gondola Plaza at the top of the stairs on the morning of the competition from 8:30-10:15 a.m.

The cost of entry is $30 per two-person team. Advance payment is accepted via mail to 205 Independence Place, Aspen, CO, 81611, or via Paypal at (send registration and waiver via fax, 970-920 3890, or e-mail to info@powdertothepeo­ple. org).

Entry entitles competitors access to the venue via the Silver Queen Gondola, a raf­fle ticket and a slice of pizza and beverage at the Sundeck during the awards party immediately following the conclusion of the event.

Winners will receive cash and prizes provided by sponsors. The top three teams advance to compete against area patrol and backcountry guides in the Mountain Pro division on March 30 in Highland Bowl. There will be a barbecue and awards ceremony on the Highlands Patrol deck immediately after the conclusion of the event. The Grand Prize is a pair of Wagner Custom Skis for the winners and bragging rights until next year.

Additional details are available by e-mail at, or by calling Mike Sladdin at 920-3890 or 618-8988.

The Aspen Skiing Co. reported no new snow over the past 24 hours on local slopes in its Wednesday morning report.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center report for the Aspen zone on Wednesday, March 19:

There are pockets of considerable avalanche danger on steep, wind-loaded N-NE-E-SE aspects near and above treeline today. Recent wind loading on these aspects will keep natural avalanche possible and human-triggered ones probable. Other aspects near and above treeline, as well as all slopes below treeline have moderate avalanche danger.

Go to for the full report and information on conditions statewide.


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