A teenager was backcountry skiing with a friend in the Chopok mountain range of central Slovakia earlier this month when he suddenly realized he was about to be engulfed by a fast-moving avalanche.
Norbert Salva of Ruzomberok had just started slaloming down the slope after stopping for a quick word with his friend. About 10 seconds later, he was forced into survival mode, captured in heart-stopping footage on his helmet cam:
Salva crashed into leaf-less bushes on the side of the slope, barely escaping the avalanche’s fury. The back of his skies can be seen getting covered by the edge of the incredibly fast avalanche.
The harrowing incident occurred the first week of March, but Salva’s video was just released by Caters News agency on Friday.
“I feel so lucky, it all happened so quickly,” he told Caters via the Mirror. “I slipped as I was skiing and then suddenly I turned around to see half the mountain coming down behind me.
“I knew I had to do something, so I just threw myself as far as I could. Luckily I managed to throw myself out of its path. Who knows what could’ve happened otherwise.”
Moments later, his friend safely pulled up alongside him.
“I’ve never even been near an avalanche before,” Salva said. “It was incredibly scary.”