A terrifying video of a skier saving a snowboarder who was upside down in a tree well at Mt. Baker has made regional news.
In the video, a skier nearly skis over an upside down snowboarder while skiing in the sidecountry on a powder day at Mt. Baker. The skier works his way back to the snowboarder and digs out a hole with his hands for the man to breathe. Then he pulls out his shovel to finish digging the boarder out.
Apparently, the snowboarder’s riding partners were ahead of him at the time and things could’ve been a lot worse if the skier didn’t happen to see him. It just shows how important it is to buddy-up and check in on each other’s whereabouts in the case of a deep snow immersion.
Below are tips to follow in such an instance:
- Yell or use whistle to get your partners attention.
- Do whatever you can to keep your head above the surface of the snow including rolling, grabbing tree branches or the tree trunk. If possible, keep your feet below level of your head.
- If you become immersed, make a space around your face and protect your airway – resist the urge to struggle, it could compromise your airspace and entrap you further.
- Stay calm to conserve air.
- Trust your partner is on their way.
- If possible, use your cell phone to call ski patrol or the resort’s emergency number.
Mt. Baker Ski Area has had one reported deep snow immersion death so far this season.
The video can be seen on YouTube at bit.ly/3KwITTT.