This post is dedicated to the friends and family of Shaun Kratzer, a man lost in an avalanche one year ago today, at Gulmarg. An account of this sad event by someone who was there can be found at The Avy in Gulmarg. There is also a discussion of this particular avalanche with photographs of the crown and deposition located at this forum thread at Teton Gravity Research. (The area of that slide is now known as Shaggy's Face). An additional account of this tragedy can be read where it was originally reported at News.com.au (Caution: This article is accompanied by a disturbing photograph of the victim).

The snowfall at Gulmarg this season has been generous, increasing the danger of avalanche at the resort, and especially in the adjacent bowls, which are unpatrolled, but heavily skied. There has been a slide in every bowl of Mt. Affarwat this season. Fortunately, the resort has retained the services of experienced patrollers and avalanche experts, and has gained permission to use explosives to trigger pre-emptive slides to control the danger to skiers.

Please consult the following avalanche resources before venturing into the backcountry, and if you intend to visit Gulmarg the patrollers firmly ask that one come equipped with a transceiver, a probe, a shovel, and the knowledge to properly use them all.

The Avalanche Center
The Avalanche Encyclopedia
Surviving the Backcountry - Tahoe World.
WestWide Avalanche Network

Photo credit: Corey Putkunz