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Utah Avalanche Center Podcast
56 minutes | 9 months ago
How Not to Be a Backcountry Mr/s. Magoo - A Conversation with Blase Reardon
Blase Reardon has been a backcountry avalanche forecaster in Ketchum, Aspen, Glacier National Park, and is now the lead forecaster for the Flathead Avalanche Center in northern Montana. On tap this episode: forecasting in data-sparse regions; the mysteries of wet snow; Mr. Magoo's close calls, wicked learning environments & the illusion of expertise; the need for increased feedback; The Snowy Torrents; accident reports; the forecaster's role; and how best to progress your backcountry know-how.
3 minutes | 10 months ago
Drew's Blogcast: Drift into Failure
How is that we learn good lessons that we mind for a while before drifting into failure once again? Hint: It has to do with heuristics.
36 minutes | 10 months ago
The Art of Storytelling Through Film - A Conversation withTrent Meisenheimer
In the avalanche world, UAC forecaster Trent Meisenheimer is at the forefront of storytelling and communication through the use of video. Trent uses high-def cameras, drones, and cutting-edge video software to communicate the visceral realities of a field day in avalanche terrain or a recent avalanche accident. He's also the wunderkind director of the Know Before You Go video, and "To Hell in a Heartbeat," among others. Trent joins us to talk about the art of storytelling through film.
53 minutes | a year ago
An Avalanche Forecaster, a Meteorologist, and an Economist Walk Into a Bar...
Here's a question: What's the goal of forecasting? Economist Peter Donner and meteorologist Larry Dunn are both retired from their respective careers predicting the future, and they join Drew to share what they know about the intricacies of forecasting. It may sound dry, but the economic concepts of gain and loss, risk and reward shape good decision making in the backcountry. So, what's the goal of forecasting: accuracy or outcomes? How do you impact decision making--not to mention your reputation--with forecasts that overly cautious or not cautious enough? And how do you minimize risk when out on a tour?
29 minutes | a year ago
Risk, Reward, and The Big Lie - A Conversation with Doug Workman
In this podcast, we sit down with Doug Workman. An alpine guide, Doug is the real deal when it comes international ski guiding. He's been taking risks on the snow since he was a toddler learning to ski at Powder Ridge in Connecticut. Since then, he has found many other places to experiment with risk and risk management: Alaska, Pakistan, Iceland, China, Morocco, Svalbard, Antarctica, and right in his backyard, the Tetons. He makes his home in Jackson, Wyoming with his wife and two children where he works as a Mountain Guide and Avalanche Program Manager for Mammut North America.
4 minutes | a year ago
Drew's Blogcast - "Roping the Wind (Slab)"
What does a Eastern Utah rancher have in common with the risks of backcountry touring?
25 minutes | a year ago
Why Forecasting is Poker and Not Chess - A Conversation with Jenna Malone
During the day, Jenna Malone is a physicians assistant, but she moonlights as a ski patroller at Alta, a Powderbird guide, and an instructor with AAI. At this fall's Utah Snow and Avalanche Workshop, she gave a compelling presentation on why avalanche decision making is more like poker than chess. The difference is in the levels of certainty and the information available to the players. Inspired by champion poker player Annie Duke's book Thinking in Bets, Jenna discusses how we make decisions in avalanche terrain, knowing that in this game, the stakes are our very lives.
5 minutes | a year ago
Drew's Blogcast - "The Devil and Daniel Webster"
What I want to know is this: Do we make a deal with Death when we play games with risk?
20 minutes | a year ago
Early Season Essentials - A Conversation with Bo Torrey
It's key to head into the early avalanche season with the proper mindset. In this podcast, we talk with UAC program director Bo Torrey. Bo talks about particular risks unique to the early season, tips and tricks for knocking the rust off your early season rescue skills, and charts out the path forward to avalanche education.
75 minutes | 2 years ago
Drew's Blogcast - "Low Danger"
On Saturday, January 5, the danger rating in the Salt Lake area went Low. As you'd expect, people got out after it. By the end of the day there were eight skier-triggered avalanches, with four people caught and carried in separate events, and one visit to the ER. In this episode, we put one of those accidents under the microscope and examine how the forecast affects decision making. Our guests: UAC forecaster Greg Gargne, backcountry skiers Vlad Pascu and Jackie Long, Professor Russ Costa, and researcher Laura Maguire.
48 minutes | 2 years ago
Bringing People and Ideas Together - A Conversation with Lynne Wolfe
In this episode, we sit down with Lynne Wolfe. Lynne is a longtime mountain guide for both Exum and Jackson Hole Mountain Guides. She has taught innumerable avalanche courses for AAI, NOLS, and Yostmark and since 2005 she's been the editor of The Avalanche Review. Discussed in this episode: articles that have helped save lives; Ed LaChapelle's "ascending spiral"; debriefing with purpose; find good ski partners; being a good ski partner; talk about things that matter; Listen!
5 minutes | 2 years ago
Drew's Blogcast: "Stacking the Deck"
There's no telling when calamity or injury may strike, so what can you do to make sure you're prepared to act when they do?
60 minutes | 2 years ago
Wise Ones - Talking about Mentors with Eeva Latosuo & Aleph Johnston-Bloom
All the way from Alaska, Eeva Latosuo and Aleph Johnston-Bloom join Drew to talk about their research on the mentoring network that undergirds so much of the avalanche and snow science community. Discussed in this episode: what a mentorship is; how to find a mentor; who's mentoring who; why mentoring; how information passes through the mentoring tree; the two-way street; aging out of mentorship; learning decision making skills, workplace safety and culture; staying curious; knowing when you've "made it."
11 minutes | 2 years ago
Drew's Blogcast: "Shame and the Social Contract"
The importance of being open about avalanche involvements and near misses, and how we can cultivate a culture of learning, absolute transparency and non-judgment, regardless of individual risk tolerances. Put yourself in other people's shoes. Practice humility. Destroy shame!
75 minutes | 2 years ago
The Smartest Guy in the Room - A Conversation with Ian McCammon
In this podcast, we sit down with none other than Ian McCammon. Ian holds a PhD in mechanical engineering with an emphasis on robotics and sensory development and his avalanche research has focused on safety education, fracture mechanics, and the human factor. Discussed in this episode: The Carruthers Incident (’95); ALPTRUTh; Lemons; FACETS; buried weak layers of assumptions; future lines of avalanche inquiry; Airbag vs avy education; The test of all knowledge is experiment; have your best day!
4 minutes | 2 years ago
Drew's Blogcast: I AM Dangerous
We can all agree that traveling in the backcountry is dangerous. Out in the mountains, we take risks and we push the odds. So, if the mountains are dangerous and risky, what does that make you?
64 minutes | 2 years ago
The Message and the Messengers - A Conversation with Alex Hamlin
Alex Hamlin is a partner at the marketing firm 7D8, and the former creative director at Black Diamond. Alex says that he works to create meaning, not content. He joins Drew to discuss: the power of stories; the critical importance of messaging; influencing behavior; honesty; the messenger's credibility; democratizing avalanche information; riding on red days; riding sans beacon; the stories we carry into the backcountry; communicating with a growing and changing population of backcountry users.
4 minutes | 2 years ago
Drew's Blogcast: "The Wisdom of Crowds"
Experts aren't always right. Oftentimes, groups are smarter than even the smartest people in them. We all have a role to play in the backcountry and observations to share.
66 minutes | 2 years ago
The Risks and Rewards of Ski Patrol - A Conversation with Jake Hutchinson
Jake Hutchinson was a long-time patroller and snow safety director at the Park City resort formerly known as Park West, Wolf Mountain, and The Canyons. He's also lead-avalanche instructor for the American Avalanche Institute. He joins Drew to talk about the risks and rewards of managing avalanche risk for the resort-skiing public. Discussed in this episode: mitigation practices; the evolution of ski patrol culture; the pressures of opening terrain; the story of a fatal in-bounds avalanche in 2007 and the ensuing legal battle; the lasting pain of bad consequences.
3 minutes | 2 years ago
Drew's Blogcast: "The Metamorphism Parable"
Special guest Tom Kimbrough, emeritus forecaster for the Utah Avalanche Center, recites "The Metamorphism Parable," penned, according to most accounts, by Bill Glude of Alaska Avalanche Specialists.
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