Skiers Talk Risk And Uncertainty At Whitefish Avalanche Workshop

During the 2013-2014 avalanche year, six people died in avalanches across Montana. At least 108 have died in the state since record keeping started in the 1950s. For the past decade and a half, these kinds of deaths have been trending upward across the country.

More than a hundred people showed up for information and to listen to speakers about risk and communication in avalanches at the Flathead Avalanche Center workshop in Whitefish last weekend.

Corin Cates-Carney

I’m Corin Cates-Carney at the tenth annual pond skip at the Whitefish Mountain Resort.

A large pool waits for skiers and snowboards at the bottom of the mountainside runway. The goal is to skip across the icy water, dressed in costume, with prizes awarded to those who make it, and those who don’t, but fail in style.

Eric Whitney

Backcountry skier Ryan Swantner is willing to work hard to get in his turns, but lately he’s had to work harder than usual.

Yellowstone Ski Festival


With the Thanksgiving holiday comes the unofficial start of the ski season in much of the Northwest. Tuesday marks the start of the Yellowstone Ski Festival, an event that draws up to five thousand cross country skiers to the trails just outside the national park every year.

“We’ve had skiers out here skiing on our trails since weekend when we got a good batch of snow," said Moira Dow, festival's director.

Porter Fox

It's safe to say that these days many Montanans are either watching the Winter Olympics, or out skiing a local mountain themselves. We live in a snow culture, and it's one of the things we love about Montana.
    But that snow is disappearing, not just here but around the world.