Several friends and I from Boulder have been here in Jackson this week filming. We met up with some Jackson friends to ski and film with.
There have been roughly 14 inches of new snow here in Jackson in the past 2days- just enough to bring to base depth up to par for 3 of my friends to think about launching fat bastard in the Jackson backcountry.
Avi danger today was listed as considerable. Because of avi conditions, I stayed in bounds with 2 others. Several of my friends did go out of bounds to shoot a potential Fat Bastard drop. Two of my Boulder friends and a Jackson friend were standing above Fat Bastard while others were off to the side in preparation to film. Only Justin, the Jackson friend, had decided he was going to send it. Just before the drop countdown was about to be called a slide ripped out up above the 3. Justin saw the slide first and immediately sent the air, probably because he wagered that this would help him avoid rocks at the base. The two others, Joel and Josh, were carried over the cliff by the slide before the could react.
Upon landing, the slide caught Justin and tumbled and burried him. Joel and Josh were carried over the cliff but miraculously ended up only partially burried and unhurt. They were able to dig themselves out. Everyone on scene immediately began to follow rescue protocol. There were a few people on scene not from our group who were a great help. Justin was located and unburried within a few minutes.
At this point, I don't want to give details of the exact injuries to Justin. It is just to hard to talk about. He did die from trauma.
Everyone involved was experienced. Justin is a Jackson local. Josh used to be a local. One of those involved is an avalanche instructor. Like I said in the other thread, a lack of experience or knowledge of the area was not a factor.
It is also important to note that we believe the slide to be natural as no one was moving when it broke loose and it broke loose a significant diestance above where anyone had been.
The finality of the situation has yet to set in for me. Two days ago I skied the traverse below fat bastard that was in the slide path today. I took a few in bounds runs with Justin today. Now he is dead.
Justin was a great skier and a great person. He will be missed.
Prays and positive vibes for his family would be good. Everybody stay safe out there.