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Avalanche safety tips for snowy slopes

Avalanche Bulletin from Mountain Safety Council's avalanche safety website, avalanche.net.nz.

If the snowy tops are tempting this winter, it’s a good idea to become well-versed in the ways of avalanche safety.

The Mountain Safety Council has teamed up with Epic TV to make an informational video about safety on the snow slopes. Featuring heli-ski guide Peter Bilous, the video details the avalanche advisory reports featured on the Mountain Safety Council’s website.

Bilous says the important rules of thumb are to have a good handle on the weather, check the avalanche danger on that day, understand your group’s abilities and limitations, and know your terrain.

The avalanche advisory reports cover mountain regions around the country, with each area featuring an avalanche bulletin. The areas are rated from one to five on a danger assessment: levels one and two mean low to moderate risk, meaning basic avalanche skills are required; level three is considerable risk, recommended for experts only; levels four and five mean high and extreme risk, which means you should cancel your trip, or make alternate plans.

In addition to the risk assessment, the bulletin details snow conditions, snow pack, recent avalanche activity, and mountain weather.

For more information, visit the MSC’s avalanche information website: avalanche.net.nz