Avalanche Takes Out High Campbell Chair at Crystal

In 2011, Crystal Mountain’s High Campbell chair was named one of the best chairlifts in North America by Powder Magazine. As of yesterday afternoon, just before 5:00 pm, it is now a tangled mess of steel below a massive debris pile. The resort just over an hour from Seattle has a gallery of photos on their FACEBOOK, and is already talking about a new lift being installed over the summer, so skiers and snowboarders may have an upgrade from the iconic center-pole double by next year. Just how big was the slide? Crystal Mountain Patroller Kim Kircher captured the massive event in the minute-long video below.

 

Correction: the video below is of a different slide took place a couple of days prior on a section of the mountain called Employee Housing. It’s apparently been a busy week for the Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol. Sorry for the mistake.

High Campbell Avalanche

Photo: Crystal Mountain Resort

The area was closed at the time, and the Crystal Mountain Ski Patrol got the slide to release using explosives. Kudos to patrol for proactively and safely unleashing this monster. Though avalanches inbounds on open terrain are rare, they aren’t unheard of. It’s pretty obvious that this fracture was much deeper than the 12 inches that fell at Crystal over the last 72 hours.