A couple snowmobilers are lucky to be alive after getting caught in a massive slide on Rabbit Ears Pass just outside of Steamboat Springs on Sunday reports The Vail Daily.
The two were a part of an 8-person group that ventured into an area they referred to as a “narrow” trail that “goes along a steep south-facing slope.” Fortunately, members of group had taken Avalanche courses and were familiar with companion rescue techniques. Through organization and effective leadership, the rest of the group was able to find the buried victims using a probe search and extraction that lasted between 10 and 14 minutes. The victims were found beneath roughly four feet of snow.
Looking back, members of the group admitted that the incident was the result of poor terrain choice. Those involved walked away from the scene without injury.
Find the entire Vail Daily article here: Snowmobilers survive avalanche on Rabbit Ears as slide danger grows in backcountry
CAIC Avalanche Description
8 riders in our group, riding along 311, where 311 turns into a steep hill that the trail crosses, a rider triggered avalanche occurred. 2 rear riders had paused to make sure front riders made it across the ‘danger zone’ just as the entire hill slid. 4′ slab at deepest point. 2 riders buried 4′ deep, pinned on trees. 1 rider remained on top of slide. Both buried riders were breathing, with searchers only having radio confirmation of 1, breathing, but pinned under sled. Probe search and extraction took 10-14 minutes, both buried riders were ok. Both riders had Avy packs, one deployed, one did not grasp handle, which appeared pretty high on shoulder. Both lives were saved by people who had taken Avalanche courses, taken control of the situation, and did an efficient and effective search and rescue.
Find the entire CAIC report here: Rabbit Ears Avalanche