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Avi Refresher - Modification

Sun, 2017-01-22
Michael Altherr
505 231 3561
Leader Email: 
Are dogs allowed?: 
Not allowed

This is a major modification of a trip planned to go to the vicinity of the Brazos Overlook due to a sustained road closure on NM Hwy 64. Apparently, NM Hwy. 64 between Tierra Amarilla and Tres Piedras has been closed for some time. It looked like it closed in late December and has not yet reopened. I checked today and the road is still closed, and with the prospect of additional snow this weekend I think the chance of it re-opening before Sunday are slim to none.

Many of the original trip participants continue to express an interest in participating in an Avy Refresher, even if my true motivation for this outing was earning turns. The good news is that there is little reason for an early morning departure for those of you suffering a post inauguration hangover. That feeling will probably last for the next four years, so get use to it.

This is not a seriously committing trip, even less so now that you don't even have to get up early, One of our Club's tenets is to support safety in our recreational activities and this is an opportunity to help meet this objective whatever your level of experience.

What I propose is as follows: we meet at the gate below the Aspen lift at Pajarito at 10:30. We skin up through Camp May, with frequent stops to share our collective avalanche anecdotes and avy information content. We'll look for some decent locations on the way up to dig a snow pit or two to evaluate the snow profile, which given the recent deposition temperatures should be interesting even if the slope angles are not conducive to sliding. We will continue up Gene's Choice (which I am presuming will remain closed) to do some transceiver recovery exercises, but if necessary we can shift further to the North.

My expectation is that we will complete these activities by 1:00 and those interested in playing on the 'little bird' can return to the Aspen lift. I am interested in following up on a recommendation to descend into the saddle from the 'blue bench' which should be 'entertaining' if the predicted snowfall is realized. Whether we access the blue bench by skinning up the West side of the ski area or catching the Mother lift will be dependent on the interest of the team and Pajarito operations.

You will likely want Tele or AT gear, with skins for climbing, but split boarders are welcome as well. If enough snow shoers are interested and can be organized into a team, they would be welcome as well. The club has a limited number of avi kits available on a first come first served basis. Let me know if you need one asap and I will try and coordinate with our gear meister.  I anticipate that you will want to dress in layers as climbing generates a lot of heat, while descending not so much. You will likely want a liter of water, snacks, and the usually cold weather and skiing accessories.

If you are interested in participating, please send me an email with your cell phone number. Also, let me know if you need any avy gear.

Happy Trails

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