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It took all of 24 hours for my mother-in-law to call asking if I knew anyone in the Stevens Pass avalanche. The conversation was one that I already had inside of my own head 22 hours earlier when I found out.
My conscience: That could have been you. If you were there you would have been skiing with that group and you would have dropped in first.
Me: I guess I should get one of those ABS bags.
My conscience: The whole trick to surviving avalanches is not getting in one
And that’s how this discussion needs to go. Avalanches fucking suck, so skiers must do everything they can to avoid them. When I was in Chamonix, the joke was that beacons were worn so people could find bodies, not to save anybody. But the ABS bag was a life saving device in this incident. The group was following the BC skiing unwritten rules. So why wouldn’t I get one of those ABS packs?
It’s the right thing for me to do. But the concern immediately becomes whether people will skip proper education and route selection due to the false sense of security ABS packs will provide.
Asked by davidlaplante
It depends if you know Tom Wallisch or not.