Wasatch Backcountry Rescue has installed a free beacon training park at Canyons. It is located at mid mountain, across the iron bridge as you head towards Tombstone.
Wasatch Backcountry Rescue is committed to provide Mountain safety, and Avalanche Awareness education to the general public. When traveling in the back country, if you do have an accident the best chance for a successful rescue comes from the group you are traveling with. Make sure that you call the Utah Avalanche Center (888) 999-4019and get an up to date forecast at www.avalanche.org. Know your route, the history of the snowpack, recent avalanche activity, and the weather forecasted for that day. Always carry the proper rescue gear, transceiver, shovel, probe, and a partner. Wasatch Backcountry Rescue recommends that you get the proper training to make smart decisions in the mountains and know how to conduct a self rescue.
A transceiver is not terribly difficult to use but a user needs to practice with it. This is especially important in the key clutch moments that you have to find a buried friend, when adrenaline is kicked into over drive and time is critical. The Wasatch Backcountry Rescue group is committed to saving the life of an avalanche victim. Our teams are trained in rapid response to accidents in the back country and our goal is always a live recovery. Over the past few years we have learned that the best chance to save a live is to educate users before accidents occur. WBR has taught numerous courses on safe travel, snow pack evaluation, and self rescue. The WBR has hosted many slide shows and goes to schools and public awareness groups to help educate school children and users in the art of avalanche awareness.
WBR purchased several fully automated transceiver facilities and installed one of them here at Canyons. It is open to the general public and free of charge (you must have a lift ticket to get up to mid mountain).
Items to bring: Avalanche probe and avalanche beacon.
This is how it works. A person grabs their probe and beacon and goes to the control panel located on the telephone pole within the roped search area. Three ability levels can be selected, Beginner, Intermediate, or Expert. If the user selects beginner, one target in the search field will start pulsing like a simulated buried victim. Intermediate will start two targets, and expert will start an unknown number of targets between one and four. Once your ability has been selected so does the clock.
Start your search, use your step downs and probe the area where the target is buried. When the searcher makes a probe strike, lights flash, sirens sound and the time is recorded. When all targets are found the siren sounds three times to let the searcher know they have completed the exercise. This helps users practice with their equipment something that has been difficult to do in the past. WBR sees this as a practical education tool and our hopes are it saves lives. Practice just got easier and our hope is it makes a difference. Backcountry users need to know how to use their equipment and take an active approach in learning about the mountains they are traveling in.
To learn more about Wasatch Backcountry Rescue please visit their website at http://www.wasatchbackcountryrescue.org
To view current avalanche conditions for the Wasatch mountains visit http://www.utahavalanchecenter.com