Snowboarder Survives Wild Avalanche on New Hampshire’s Mount Washington
Editor's note: This article was written by a Townsquare Media Northern New England contributor and may contain the individual's views, opinions, or personal experiences.
For some reason, you may not think of avalanches in this area. Even though we have a bunch of mountainous terrain throughout New Hampshire and Maine -- mountains that frequently get hammered with snow and high winds -- avalanches just aren't a thought for some of us.
But they've happened here and there over the years, and a recent one was just caught on film and almost had a terrible ending.
Mount Washington Avalanche
With New Hampshire and Maine both being blessed with fresh powder over the weekend, tons of Maine families catching the end of school vacation week and lots of Granite State families just beginning their school vacation week hit the slopes for boarding, skiing, and tubing.
And while mountains like Sugarloaf and Cannon were drama-free last weekend, there was almost a massive and tragic disaster on Mount Washington -- more specifically, according to video captured by R.J. Phipps, The Lip in Tuckerman Ravine.
Because as a skier and snowboarder were shredding their way down Tuckerman Ravine, with the boarder positioned further down the mountain than the skier...
...the skier triggered an avalanche without any warning at all, not giving the boarder any time to react and instead getting swept up quickly the building avalanche.
According to R.J. Phipps' video, the avalanche carried the snowboarder a couple of hundred feet down the mountain into Chicken Rock Gully. Thankfully (and somehow), the boarder remained close to the surface and was not injured.
WMUR reported that according to the Mount Washington Avalanche Center, that avalanche was large enough to bury and kill someone, so the boarder that was swept away was very lucky.
NH and Maine Avalanches
Again, even though somehow avalanches aren't necessarily thought of in this area, they're most definitely a thing and when mountains alert visitors to a high avalanche danger, skiers, boarders, and tubers should listen. The Mount Washington Observatory has a laundry list of avalanche victims and survivors dating back to the 1950s.
And just a couple of years ago, WAGM ran a story on avalanches happening in Maine at a rate of sometimes up to a dozen a time.