Thanks to Grant Gunderson, Unofficial Networks readers get a look into what the fuss was all about this month in the North West. With Mount Bakers getting up to 110 inches in one week, and avalanche dangers being in the ‘black’ things we’re getting pretty crazy. Here are a few photos by Gunderson who had the chance to photograph some of the results of the Mount Baker Helicopter avalanche control.

Imagine the amount of snow that this avalanche would have carried down the hill. Luckily this was planned so there was no risk of having someone being caught in it. I sure wouldn’t feel comfortable standing where he is…

“Helicopter avalanche control work resulting in a 13 ~ 15 ft crown on Hemispheres”

“Crown of 100 year slide on the Shuksan arm”¬†¬©

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  1. someone says:


  2. Jason says:

    ZOIX! Certain Death!

  3. Jason says:

    Funny title btw… photos of maaive aval….

  4. Anonymous says:

    What a waste of good snow…..

  5. petestevensonthethird says:

    Looking good PJ

  6. SB4L says:

    Grant Gunderson’s photography is stunning. Abso-fucking-lutely stunning.

  7. David says:

    based on the last photo of the “Shuksan arm” it looks like this thing wrapped around the entire bowl and fractured along numerous aspects. i’ve never seen anything like that along so many aspects. crazy.

  8. Phil says:

    That’s Insanely Awesome!!!

  9. ray52 says:

    LOL @ the crown height >> Tahoe’s deepest zones! Be safe y’all!!!!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Good thing unofficial also posted a movie of guys bc skiing this on the same day. Total freaking morons you lot.

  11. uffda says:

    those silly facets

  12. Scotty says:

    You must not ride at Baker very much. The area that slid is not called hemispheres. Hemispheres is another slackcountry zone. The area that slid is the Shuksan arm that leads over to Mt. Shuksan. The arm receives no avalanche control work, it was a natural releasing slide, which occurred in the early morning before the ski area opened. The slide then prompted the ski area to remain closed for the day. I’m pretty damn sure that baker doesn’t use helicopters to do its avi control work either. All done by pro patrol on skis. Get your info correct!

    • i was there says:

      he is right…

    • Eric Behn says:

      It’s true, I don’t ski baker as much as I would like to. All of the info in our article was take from the photographers personal blog. The final photo was not from the heli ava control which I did a poor job of indicating. But the first three are of a different zone than the last which were controlled avalanches create by the Mt Baker Ski Patrol via a helicopter according to Grant Gunderson. Two different slides here, so were both wrong and right on different measures. Just enjoy the photos.

    • Chill out douchebag says:

      You can always tell someone that thinks they are smarter than they are or aren’t right very often because they jump at every opportunity to correct someone. “you must not ride baker very much.” “get your info correct.” blahblahblah

  13. Chris says:

    Chill out Scotty!! Your correction would have been better left without the arrogance at the end.

  14. Diggy says:

    Similar episode in 1999. Fortunately no one was injured in this recent occurrence.

    Here is the report with photos:

  15. slam says:

    They did use helicopters

  16. Chris says:

    Not to dig up an old thread, but I was searching for Grant’s photos of this slide event and came across this. Hemispheres is bracketed by the ski area all its northern aspects, and it is minimally avie controlled to protect the runs that it effects. This slide did in fact spill into The Canyon trail. The fourth photo is of the Shuksan Arm, to the east of the resort, where the nearest slope was triggered sympathetically by avalanche control work near the top of Chair 8. If I remember things correctly, the Shuksan Arm event prompted the ski area to use a helicopter to aggressively bomb Hemispheres, resulting in the slide that ran out into The Canyon trail and created that monstrous crown.

    Sorry Scotty and others – occasional Mt Baker does utilize helicopters and does do control work on backcountry terrain that may effect the in-bounds area.


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