Everyone knows snow sports comes with a risk. With a mountain load of snow piling up, there’s only so long before a trigger causes some form of movement, movements which can be deadly. Only one day ago, 16 March, four mountain climbers were killed in an avalanche in the Austrian Alps.
But it isn’t just avalanches that can causes problems, as a veteran snowboarder recently discovered.
Mac Jacobson, who has been snowboarding for 12 years, was on a routine skiing trip with his friend Stephen to Squaw Valley in California.
But the excursion went horribly wrong when an imbalanced drop from 30-foot cliff landed him on his head, plunging his whole body under several feet of snow.
Stephen, who had a GoPro attached to his helmet, captured the moment Mac emerged alive and completely unscathed after being buried upside down for nearly ten minutes.
Watch the footage:
After the incident, Stephen makes a swift b-line towards Mac. A group of friends are already attempting to dig Mac out with their snowboards while Stephen shouts “coming… we’re coming”. Stephen then frantically digs Mac out with his bare hands. The footage shows how compact the snow was, and Mac comments that he felt “pinned”.
Thanks to his friends, Mac made a lucky escape. While incidents like these shouldn’t discourage snowboarders and skiers, it’s a reminder that the mountain is wild and can be dangerous. Take safety precautions and if you stick to a group, you’re more likely to look after each other.