American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Snow, Skiing, Inexperience, British Columbia, Coast Mountains, Wedge Mountain

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1981

FALL ON SNOW, SKIING, INEXPERIENCE British Columbia, Coast Mountains, Wedge Mountain

A party of four had been helicoptered to the summit of Wedge Mountain on July 7, 1980, and was descending the northwest couloir on skis. Gerhard Slinger (27) had stopped near the top of the couloir to take photographs when he lost his balance, fell about 800 feet, and sustained fatal head injuries. (Source: D. Cathers)

Analysis

The party had no guide, was apparently inexperienced in mountain skiing, and unfamiliar with the route. The couloir in question is steep and so shaped that anyone falling from its upper part would (as happened in this case) strike rocks before getting to the easier lower portion. (Source: D. Cathers)

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