Item: The factors leading to the closing of two alaska heu-ski operations in spring 2000
Title: The factors leading to the closing of two alaska heu-ski operations in spring 2000
Proceedings: Proceedings of the 2000 International Snow Science Workshop, October 1-6, Big Sky, Montana
Authors: Jeny Hance, Alaska Backcountry Adventures Avalanche Forecaster
Abstract: The snow and avalanche cycle that took place in January and early February throughout many parts of Alaska, that closed highway, destroyed homes and took lives other than backcountry enthusiasts was well documented by national TV. and newspapers. Friends would ask me "What are you going to do when you start heli operations in March?" My answer was, "I hope by that time the cycle would be over." As it turned out, that cycle was replaced by another that basically lasted until April 5 and ultimately shut down two heli operations, Valdez Heliski Guides and Alaska Backcountry Adventures (VHSG and AB.A). From February through March, Mountain Safety Inc. was doing avalanche forecasting for the company repairing powerIine poles located directly In front of our hell base. They reported clear below freezing temperatures, period of snow, low lying fog and several days of inversions resulting in at least two different surface hoar layers forming in the 1600' - 4000' elevation.
Keywords: forecasting, heli operations, safety, avalanche cycle
Digital Abstract Not Available