Mountaineers Adam McFarren and Peter Krzanowsky narrowly missed being hit by a slab avalanche while climbing 13,857-foot Clinton Peak, west of Hoosier Pass, on Saturday. The two were snowshoeing across the east side of the peak, headed for the southeast slopes, when a slide buried the tracks they had just left across a snowfield. McFarren apparently triggered the avalanche behind them when he stepped onto the next snowfield while Krzanowsky waited at a rock island.
The two climbers debated whether to continue, and then decided they could safely negotiate rocky slopes to the summit and back. Nonetheless, the incident is a vivid reminder that you don’t have to be actually on a dangerous slope to be seriously threatened by an avalanche. McFarren measured the slope they’d crossed at just 25 degrees, but it was located below a tender and significantly steeper slope.
Thanks to McFarren for sharing his photos and story—you can read the full account and see more images at his excellent blog, The Journey is Home.
All photos used with permission of Adam McFarren.