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NOLS WOE Tetons Ski Mountaineering Expedition: Day 17 – Whiteout

The second storm continues to bear down on us as we practice multiple burial avalanche victim recovery. Notes:

  • Despite a clear and cold overnight, the storm came back in full force this morning.
  • We did a quick few hours of skinning uphill. Definitely more dramatic in the raging storm. Route finding is also much more difficult in whiteout conditions. Tracks get covered up immediately, and there is almost no contrast between the ground and sky. Frequently when finding the way for the group up the mountain, I would simply walk into the ground. Much more balance and coordination required to stay moving without being able to see the horizon.
  • By the time we had done one run, conditions had deteriorated to the point that we decided to go back closer to camp.
  • Practiced avalanche rescue techniques for a bit, then went back to camp to hunker.
  • Had a good one-on-one lesson with Roger on multiple burial avalanche victim recovery. Good to get some personal feedback on avalanche transceiver usage.
  • After dinner tonight, had a feedback session with instructors. Lots of good ideas to consider regarding my teaching style and outdoor skills.
  • More avy training tomorrow… Excited!
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