A 25-year old Fernie man is recovering after an avalanche threw him over a kilometre down the mountain in just 30 seconds.
Caleb Brown and his skiing partner Peter Basaraba, who are both avalanche trained, were in the backcountry near Golden earlier this month when a 2.5 magnitude slide hit.
Brown admits, as someone who has being skiing for over 20 years, they noticed a number of red flags on their way up the slope but thought they would be safe and continued on.
Brown was ahead of Basaraba when they the situation changed very quickly.
He says as soon as the crack of the avalanche echoed he knew what was going on.
Brown recalls his first thoughts were, “OK. This is real. This is happening,” and he was immediately surrounded and quickly overpowered by the snow.
The Fernie native says he never thought he was going to die and in fact remembers he was not going to die as he fought really hard while rolling down the hill under the mass of snow.
Brown feels bad that he put Basaraba in that situation and jokes his partner was the one that was going to have to dig him out.
Brown says when things settled he was actually above the snow with one boot buried, which ultimately resulted in a torn MCL.
The 25 year old considers himself extremely lucky to make it out alive and says he hopes others learn from his foolishness.
He chuckles that once they made it out they sat and had a tea, one that never tasted so good before.
– Josh Hoffman/Devin Howard
– Fernie skier Caleb Brown
(Photo courtesy of Caleb Brown)