Thanks to Matt Galland of Orem, Utah for sharing the story of close call with an avalanche near Provo Canyon on Monday, March 7th. KSL reports Galland and his two friends headed up to the South Fork area in Provo Canyon and they took every safety precaution possible, starting with checking avalanche conditions before they headed out. The group thought they mitigated any potential issues by staying off big slopes and not going up as high. In GoPro footage captured by both Galland and his friend, Galland is buried for a moment before his blue jack pops out of the white.
“I was able to get out of the, you know, off the slab and kind of dig my hands in and hold myself there.” –Matt Galland
Galland used his avalanche whistle to alert his friend downslope and yelled his friend’s name. Galland said his friend was his biggest worry. The friend yells back that he’s OK. Galland has been a backcountry skier for 25 years, skiing 80 to 100 days a year. He described himself as skiing conservatively, usually only on green days, yellow, at the least. He has never seen or triggered an avalanche before.
Thankfully, everyone was okay. Galland later took a helicopter flight over the area to better understand the scope of the avalanche.
“It was just Mother Nature reminding us, ‘I’m super powerful. I’ll always win, eventually, if you test me. And, respect me and my boundaries.”
To begin or continue your avalanche educational journey please find complete resources HERE.