- Massey's Waterfall
- Location Description
- Approximately 2km NE of Field BC
- 51.40409 °, -116.46689 °
- 1300 m
- Ice Climbing
- A naturally triggered wind slab released from a steep alpine feature above the Massey's waterfall on Mount Stephen near Field, BC. Massey’s is a very popular Grade 3 waterfall ice climb. The climb is at the bottom of a very large avalanche path, avalanches that start above on Mt. Stephen often funnel through the track and run right over the waterfall.
On the day of the incident the avalanche entrained loose faceted snow at and below treeline and ran over the waterfall striking a group of ice climbers at the base of waterfall. The group carried out a self-rescue but were limited because their packs that contained their rescue equipment were swept away. One injured person was evacuated by a Parks Canada Visitor Safety team and subsequently passed away in hospital.
|Date/Time||Size||Type||Trigger||Elevation||Aspect||Slab width||Slab Thickness|
|2.5||S||Na||2400 m||N||50 m||35 cm|
|Present Temp||Max Temp||Min Temp||24hr Trend||Wind Speed||Wind Direction||Sky Condition||Precipitation Type & Intensity|
Weather Comment: After an extended period of drought, small amounts of new snow had been incrementally loading the snowpack in the Rockies. In general these amounts were not enough to trigger an avalanche cycle, and explosive tests in the Mt. Whymper area the day prior to the incident confirmed this with only small avalanches triggered. The significant difference was local accumulation of snow in the Yoho area the days prior to the avalanche, and then a significant wind event the night before and the morning of the avalanche.
|Snowpack||24hr Snow||Storm Snow||Storm Date|
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