Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC)

Colorado Avalanche Information Center

On Tuesday, the Colorado Avalanche Information Center released a more detailed review of what happened during a slide on New Year’s Day. Aspen Mountain Powders Tours had a tough day on the first day of 2015. The company, operated through Aspen Skiing Company, had a ski guide injured in an avalanche, and was one person away from injuring a client. 


There’s no expected release date for a review of an avalanche accident on New Year’s Day next to Aspen Mountain. The slide injured a ski guide with Aspen Mountain Powder Tours while he was making turns with clients. The Colorado Avalanche Information Center says its report on the accident isn’t like most, because the review was requested by a private company, rather than the CAIC trying to figure out what happened during a backcountry accident.  

CAIC/Aspen Mountain Ski Patrol

There’s an avalanche watch for Aspen and surrounding areas, from the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. The CAIC says new snow and winds from an ongoing winter storm make natural and human triggered snow slides likely on steep slopes with an angle of more than thirty degrees.

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There’s been a troubling problem with avalanche deaths in recent years... and now Powder Magazine and gear company  Black Diamond have joined forces to figure out what's going on. They’ve hired a freelance journalist to dig deep into what happened during certain accidents-- and what's being done to help backcountry travelers make better decisions when avoiding avalanches. APR's Elise Thatcher talks with writer David Page about the project, called "The Human Factor."

Photo by Dale Atkins/RECCO

This is the time of year when backcountry skiing CAN get less risky. After dire avalanche warnings throughout the winter season, spring turns are often safer. But that’s not always a guarantee.

Photo by Dale Atkins/RECCO

It’s been a big avalanche season this winter, with some of the most powerful Colorado slides experts have seen. Now, the state’s hub for avalanche forecasting is hoping to add ways to help people avoid getting caught in avalanche accidents. The non-profit  Friends of the Colorado Avalanche Information Center is aiming to raise a hundred and fifty thousand dollars for the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. To find out exactly what that money would go towards, Aspen Public Radio’s Elise Thatcher talks with Ethan Greene, Executive Director of the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. 

Mountain Edition - February 20th, 2014

Feb 20, 2014

The Thompson Divide prompted conflicting statements by environmental groups and Garfield County this week. Avalanche danger has been sketchy lately because of certain unusual factors.  And if a snow slide happens inside a ski area, turns out the resort isn’t to blame. A Basalt advisor wins an award for her work with female investors. We say goodbye to a member of the Aspen Public Radio family, lost too soon.  And, we’ll wrap up our coverage of Aspen area athletes going to the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Courtesy CAIC

The Aspen area has a high rate of avalanche accidents. And this winter there’s a new avalanche forecaster to help bring those down. Blase Reardon is with the Colorado Avalanche Information Center, and gave a talk last night. That was at the Limelight Hotel, and coordinated by the group Powder for the People. 


Editor's note: below is a transcript of reporter Elise Thatcher's story.