43 episodes

The podcast that helps keep you on top of the snow rather than buried beneath it.

Utah Avalanche Center Podcast Utah Avalanche Center

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 89 Ratings

The podcast that helps keep you on top of the snow rather than buried beneath it.

    Brad Meiklejohn: Setting the Early Uptrack for the Utah Avalanche Center

    Brad Meiklejohn: Setting the Early Uptrack for the Utah Avalanche Center

    A lifetime ago, back in 1981, Brad Meiklejohn was ski-bumming and working at Alta when he witnessed a full-depth avalanche on High Rustler. It was mesmerizing, and it changed his path in life. He went on to study snow and avalanches on the East Coast, moved back out West and joined what was then known as the Utah Avalanche Forecast Center. His life, or his sense of its preciousness, changed again when he recovered the bodies of four friends buried in the Talking Mountain Cirque slide in the La Sal Mountains. These days, he works as a conservationist in Alaska, and he joins us to share his memories of the evolution of the UAC and his insights on life, death and the true value of outdoor recreation.

    • 1 hr 7 min
    How Do The Youngs Guns Manage Risk?

    How Do The Youngs Guns Manage Risk?

    After five years of hosting the podcast, Drew Hardesty was curious about the mindset of the young guns just now cutting their teeth and testing themselves in very real, very consequential ski mountaineering terrain. Is the old guard wasting their time wagging their tongues and fingers about the dangers of backcountry travel while the youth just roll their eyes? That's where Zack Little comes in. Hired by Exum Mountain Guides as a teenager, Little has climbed and skied all over the Teton Range and even climbed the Grand Teton before high school. He joins us to talk about risk management, mentorship and laying the groundwork for a long life in the mountains.

    • 54 min
    Grant Statham on How We Think About And Communicate Avalanche Risk

    Grant Statham on How We Think About And Communicate Avalanche Risk

    In the winter of 2002-03, 14 people were killed in a pair of large avalanches in British Columbia. Those horrific tragedies spurred Canada’s national parks agency to find ways to better insure public safety in the winter mountains. That’s where Grant Statham comes in. An accomplished mountain guide and avalanche forecaster, Grant led the development of new safety systems and methods that have been implemented around the world, but curiously, not in the U.S. Grant joined us to talk how we think about avalanche hazard and how we communicate that risk to the public.

    • 55 min
    Does Culture Eat Training for Breakfast?

    Does Culture Eat Training for Breakfast?

    It’s been said that culture eats training for breakfast. In other words, you can take all the classes, read all the books, develop a fool-proof checklist and a dialed-in system, but when the snow falls, and when a social animal enters a high-risk environment, all that education and preparation can go right out the window. AMGA/IFMGA mountain guide Margaret Wheeler and Sawtooth Avalanche Center forecaster Chris Lundy join us for a conversation about the push and pull between cultural pressures, “selfish” rewards and the difficulty of actually understanding risk in the backcountry.

    • 1 hr
    A Financial Adviser and a Heli-Ski Guide Walk Into a Bar

    A Financial Adviser and a Heli-Ski Guide Walk Into a Bar

    At first glance, financial advising and heli-skiing might not seem to have much if anything in common. But, think about it like this: Both take on clients who put a lot of money on the line, they put a lot of trust in their guides, and there are some heavy costs to getting it wrong. This time around we’re joined by Ronna Cohen, a financial adviser and backcountry skier, and Jed Workman, an Alaskan heli-ski guide to talk about risk, reward and “accident cascades.”

    • 56 min
    Veteran Forecaster Don Bachman on the San Juan Avalanche Project

    Veteran Forecaster Don Bachman on the San Juan Avalanche Project

    In the spring of 1971, Don Bachman walked into the mining town of Silverton, Colorado, with a mission, not quite from God, but from the federal government: Study avalanches in the San Juan Mountains. The Bureau of Reclamation had recently established a cloud-seeding program in the region, and it was Bachman’s job—as part of a veritable ‘Murderers Row’ of snow science pioneers—to map and study the avalanche problem in the area and get a sense of how it would be impacted by atmospheric tampering. Bachman joins us to talk about the project and how conservative decision making in the backcountry can lead to a long life in the snowy mountains.

    • 47 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
89 Ratings

89 Ratings

One more run ,

Low danger

Amazing podcast with so many lessons. Thanks!

mburr1 ,

Great!

I’m new-ish to the wasatch backcountry and this is full of great info. Great guests, and Drew the host is full of amazing insights and knowledge.

Thanks

DeltaEchoKilo ,

Incredible Podcast

This is an incredible resource full of insight from some of the most experienced and learned professionals in the avalanche industry. Furthermore, Drew Hardesty co-stars every episode only adding deeper value and perspective. I really hope the UAC continues this project. Please bring the podcast back fellas!!!

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