A huge thanks to Petzl for getting on board with us and taking a big step to support our efforts.
Thanks to everyone who turned out to hear Chris Joosen, lead snow ranger and Joe Klementovich, snow ranger and photographer, speak, bid on items at the silent auction and share some beer and pizza at the Frontside Grind. It was a bit overwhelming to see such a healthy turn out. Local, friends, press and visitors to the valley that have never heard of the avalanche center came out in full force to get to know what goes on in Huntington and Tuckerman Ravine during the winter. Getting the word out and helping educate the skiers, climbers and hikers that visit in the winter is one of our driving goals. The more people know before going into the back-country the safer all of us will be.
Here’s a link to the a nice write-up in the Union Leader. Thanks SARA YOUNG-KNOX!
Frank Carus, snow ranger at the Mount Washington Avalanche Center, John Branagan of Sterling Rope and Bill Downey of the Friends of Mount Washington Avalanche Center. Through partnerships with outdoor manufacturers we’re all able to work together to help each other. Whether it’s providing much needed rescue ropes and equipment or supplies for the day to day operation of the center our group is working to help connect and support our local avalanche center. This is one step in that direction. We look forward to building new and long lasting connections as we grow.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 20th, 2011
Contact: Bill Downey
December 19th 2011 (Portsmouth, NH) – Bill Downey, owner of Portsmouth Kayak Adventures, today announced the creation of a non-profit organization called the Friends of Mt. Washington Avalanche Center (MWAC).
The Friends of MWAC is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization established to support the Mt. Washington Avalanche Center’s efforts including avalanche advisories, search and rescue, and avalanche educational programs. Friends of MWAC will achieve this mission through donations, sponsorships, grants and by hosting fundraising events.
The numbers of backcountry enthusiasts have grown over the years. However, the funding for education, forecasting, and rescue have declined. In fact, in the next two years budget cuts of 25% are predicted by the Androscoggin Ranger District of the White Mountain National Forest. “We’ve established this group in order to assist the MWAC in maintaining the quality of services we’ve come to know and appreciate,” says Downey.
Friends of MWAC recently hosted their first fundraising and educational event at the end of November at Portsmouth Kayak Adventures. The Backcountry Skiing – Intro to Alpine Touring event attracted approximately 75 people who learned about the latest gear available in the industry. Attendees also had an opportunity for questions and answers and learned about MWAC’s services and responsibilities from Snow Ranger Jeff Lang of MWAC.
New Hampshire is the only state in the nation where the Fish and Game Department transfers Search and Rescue to the Forest from December 1st – Spring. The MWAC is operated by the Androscoggin Ranger District of the White Mountain National Forest and is the only American avalanche center east of the Rockies. With the rich history of skiing and climbing here, it is also the oldest forecasting program in the country. The Friends of Mt. Washington Avalanche Center’s Board of Directors consists of Downey, John Knieriem, Marta Downing, Nick Diana, Micum Davis, Craig Taylor, Peter Miller, and Bruce Sommers.
To become a member of the Friends of MWAC, visit www.friendsofmwac.org and sign up for the enewsletter or donate directly on the website. For more information about the services offered by the MWAC, go to: www.mountwashingtonavalanchecenter.org.