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Flere ekspert tips til lavinesikkerhed

Flere ekspert tips til lavinesikkerhed

Bjergguide: Søren Svinth

Hvad er dit bedste råd til nye offpiste skiere og snowboardere

Jeg anbefaler at tage et grundkursus i skitouring. Det kræver træning at bruge sit lavineudstyr og viden om sne for at kunne vurdere snestabiliteten. På et kursus lærer man om sne og lavinekundskab, vejvalg i bjergene, navigation, færdsel på gletscher med ski, redning i bjergene, vejret i bjergene og off-piste skiteknik. Alt sammen noget der øger din sikkerhed i off-pisten.

Hvad er den mest almindelige fejl folk begår i lavineterræn?

Lavineterræn er komplekst og kræver mange kundskaber for at kunne beherske det sikkert og effektivt. Ofte undervurderer folk de faktiske sneforhold efter en periode med nysne kombineret med vind.

Din bedste anbefaling til at lære om lavinesikkerhed:

Jeg har lært meget af at deltage i lavinekurser og seminarer. Kombineret med skitouringsture hvor man kan stoppe op og tage sig tid til at vurdere sneforholdene. Mærk de øverste lag i sneen med staven, mål hældnings vinklen på terrænet, grav en sneprofil og vurder snekrystallerne i de forskellige lag. På den måde lærer du om sneen. Start med moderate ture hvor du har et overskud til at lære. Vær fleksibel i dit rutevalg og fastlås dig ikke på et bestemt objekt, husk at det er bjergene der bestemmer hvad der er muligt og ikke muligt.

Søren Svinth er certificeret IFMGA/UIAGM Mountain Guide og har i mere ind 10 år har Søren guidet unikke oplevelser i vild natur, sommer og vinter. Søren kan blandt andet tilbyde guidning og kurser i skitouring i midnatssolen i Nordnorge, hvor bjerge og hav mødes. Off-piste skiløb i Japan. Is- og alpinklatring i Alperne. Klippeklatring i det smukke Spanien. Han kan også tilbyde skiekspeditioner til blandt andet Svalbard, Canada, Grønland og Sydamerika. Oplevelser du med garanti aldrig vil glemme! Søren skræddersyer gerne aktiviteter, efter dine ønsker og mål uanset niveau. For dig alene eller i en gruppe. Er det hvad, du drømmer om, kan du kontakte Bjergguiderne.dk

Lavineekspert: Andy Anderson

What is your best advice for new offpiste skiers/snowboarders in regards of avalanche safety?

More than 90% of avalanche fatalities result from avalanches triggered by the victim or someone in the victim's group. While this statistic may seem alarming, it also offers a path towards improvement. If we as backcountry users carry the right gear, get educated, pay attention to the conditions and terrain around us, make better decisions, and change the way we travel in the backcountry, we can avoid most serious avalanche accidents.

If you are new to the backcountry or looking to get out of the resort and into the backcountry, start by getting the appropriate gear and taking an avalanche class. The right gear doesn’t just mean skis and skins. It means getting avalanche rescue gear: a beacon, a shovel, a probe, and an airbag pack to carry it all in. While it may seem expensive at first think of it as your season pass to all the mountains of the world! Of course, the gear alone will not keep you safe. Knowledge and good decisions matter more than any material thing. Take an avalanche class to learn what to look out for in the backcountry, how to identify avalanche terrain, how to make better decisions with your group, and how to travel smart in the backcountry.

Getting the right gear and getting the right training will set you on the path towards having fun and being safe in the backcountry. Once you have the gear and the training you have to use it. Keep current and updated by practicing with your gear and using the things you learned in your avalanche class.

Check the avalanche forecast before you go out into the backcountry. The information in the forecast will help you stay aware of what is going on the backcountry and give you an indication of what avalanche problems to expect. While you are actually out touring in the mountains pay attention to what is going on around you and gather all the information you can about the conditions in the specific are that you are exploring that day. Get your own picture of the conditions. Finally, make sure you are using the travel techniques you learned in your avalanche class to get out of harm's way while you travel in the backcountry.

In North America, we use these points as part of our Know Before You Go avalanche awareness programs. In summary, we try to get these 5 main points across:

  • Get the gear
  • Get the training
  • Get the forecast
  • Get the picture
  • Get out of harm's way

What is the most common mistake people do in avalanche terrain?

Human factors play a part in most avalanche accidents. We all use shortcuts to try and make complex decisions easier. Unfortunately, in the case of avalanches, these shortcuts often lead us to miss important details in the always changing world of snow and avalanches. These human factors include:

  • Familiarity: "I've skied here 100 times."
  • Acceptance: “If I rip this awesome line then my friends will be impressed and I can get a cool photo for Instagram.”
  • Consistency: “I made plans to ski this couloir. I can’t change my plan.”
  • Expert halo: “I am concerned about the slope stability, but since my ski partner has her Avalanche 2 certification and doesn’t seem concerned, then it must be okay”
  • Tracks/scarcity: "I have got to get that line before it gets tracked out"
  • Social facilitation: “I want to agree with my friends. I want them to think I am cool. I’m going to stick with their decisions”.

We need to recognize the times when uncertainty or complexity overwhelms us and we revert to making human-factor based decisions. We need to help each other respect conservative decisions. We need to learn to applaud our friends and partners when they help us back down just as much or more than we do when people ride big lines or make narrow escapes.

Your best recommendation for learning about avalanche safety

Take an avalanche class. These classes get you out on the snow with professional avalanche instructors. Go for a 2 or 3-day course so that you have plenty of on the snow time. It is well worth the time and investment. There are also several great online learning resources for avalanche safety including:

But nothing beats a hands-on field-based course.

Andy Anderson works as an avalanche forecaster for the Sierra Avalanche Center in the winter. Andy has been a ski patroller in the Northwest, an avalanche educator in Utah and Colorado, a volunteer forecaster in Moab, Utah, a snow researcher, an English teacher in Chile, a climbing guide, and burger flipper. He spent 15 summers working as a climbing ranger in Rocky Mountain National Park, on Mt. Rainier, and volunteering in Grand Teton National Park.

He has over 15 years of professional avalanche and mountain rescue experience. When not forecasting avalanches, he spends his time running long races, climbing as much as possible, scrambling up and down mountains, and trying to keep up with his wife and son on the rocks, in the mountains, and in the backcountry.

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