View Full Version : The Canadian Avalanche Center needs our help

March 21st, 2010, 06:59 PM
Time to put our money where our mouths are.

There have been some awesome discussions related to avalanche safety over the past week. Many have expressed frustration over the image of our sport and would like the public to see a better side.

Members are putting forth great ideas to make backcountry snowmobiling safer and to improve the image of our sport, but none of this happens without cash.

Smiley (Sherry Waldroff-Beck) lost her father and a close friend last season in two separate avalanches. Sherry started Candles to Remember (http://www.candlestoremember.ca), a fundraiser in late February.

http://zacstracs.com/images/481.jpg (http://www.candlestoremember.ca)

To date the support by the media has been great. Sherry has been using her personal time to deliver great messages and hope for our community as a whole.

Considering the bad press we have been getting it was good to see her face in some of the newscasts to show that sledders were already on track with raising awareness before these recent incidents.

The structure for this fundraiser is all in place. All the funds raised will go directly to the Canadian Avalanche Centre for snowmobile specific resources.

Cash or checks are accepted for Candle orders and $cash$ donations.
Candles to Remember fundraiser (http://www.candlestoremember.ca)

*NEW* Credit Cards for Cash Donations - please follow this link for other options.
Online credit card donation to the CAC (http://zacstracs.com/c2r/296/donate)

There is less than a week left of this fundraiser and the $$ generated through cash donations and candle sales is seriously under expectations.

Considering the negative press that backcountry sledding is receiving as of late, wouldn't it be great to generate a good news story?!


March 21st, 2010, 07:33 PM
Hope that you don't mind, but I have reposted this from another thread. Here are some other ideas as well that may help to increase the awareness and access to avy materials and training.


Great post, and I agree, but what to do to start 'banding together' in this ongoing battle. I do not ask this in a disrespectful way, truly looking to help and try to become part of the solution. I agree, Im tired of talking about it, more than enough has been said, there are many different opinions but I think in the end all any of us want is to never see this happen again...

I am on board 100% to do whatever small part I can play, just dont know what that is...

Yep, Lori again (Randy just doesn't type fast enough :rolleyes: ) ...as we have been on this bandwagon a long time here are some of our thoughts.

Feedback is certainly welcome. Cost vs. benefit....which ideas might be the most effective?

Yes, I am an avalanche instructor, however my passion comes from being a snowmobiler that wants unregulated access to the backcountry and from being a sappy mom and wife that wants return trips for all sledders. Anyone that has attended our programs would probably agree...(on the sappy part at least!)

Education and better access to resources won't lead to zero deaths, but it can't hurt to try. Pretty small investment for our community that has the potential for a pretty big gain.

Support Candles to Remember.
Follow this link:Candles to Remember (http://www.candlestoremember.ca/)
This is a fundraiser initiated by Sherry Waldroff (Beck). Sherry lost her father and a close friend in two separate avalanches last season. Funds raised will go to the Canadian Avalanche Center (CAC) to support snowmobile specific programs.

ACT QUICKLY as this fundraiser wraps up on March 26, 2010.Purchase candles or forward cash donations. Be sure to designate your donations under your local snowmobile club or dealership or as a Snowandmud member. There are prizes for the group that raises the most money.
*NEW donations may be made by Credit Card as well* (http://zacstracs.com/c2r/296/donate)

Businesses and individuals can donate to the Canadian Avalanche Foundation and receive a tax deductible receipt.
Canadian Avalanche Foundation (http://avalanche.ca/caf)

Encourage local dealers and manufacturers to support the Canadian Avalanche Center. The CAC is a non-profit that relies on donations to top up the funds it receives from the Federal and Provincial gov'ts that support them. The CAC is seriously underfunded right now.

Impress upon your MLA or MP the importance of increased Fed. and Prov. support to the CAC. The CAC office is overloaded and understaffed to develop and deliver the programming that they are capable of. They are awesome people with huge hearts and lots of great ideas that simply don't have the resources to do more.

Encourage dealer and manufacturer support of local avy classes. Some dealers and clubs that we worked with last season helped to advertise and promote the courses, offered classroom space for free, offered course discounts or money cards to the participants.

Encourage dealers to send staff to avy classes...even if they aren't sledders. Snowmobile sales and service staff are in a great position to communicate the value of avy training. Besides, wouldn't you rather buy avy equipment from someone who actually knows how to use it?!

Encourage dealers and clubs to display Avy brochures and Course Schedules in their shops, cabins and trailbooths. These are available from the CAC or your local avy instructors.

Encourage dealers, hotels and snowmobile clubs to post the CAC Avalanche Bulletins and brochures on a regular basis.

Encourage snowmobile clubs to do a beacon check of all sledders heading up the trail. Every little opportunity to educate unaware riders is important.

Encourage sledders to access avalanche training classes that include a hands-on field component. Hands-on training is needed to really 'get it'. Sticking your nose in the snow, checking out terrain and completing rescue scenarios with your riding group is key.

Stay current with refreshers and advanced avy classes. Techniques change and avy resources change...stay current. And the USE IT! Awareness is one thing, implementing it is another. Truly, small changes in our riding habits can may HUGE changes in the level of risk that we need to expose ourselves to.
Upcoming programs that I am familiar with:
CAC website - Bulletins and Instructors. (http://avalanche.ca/sled)

AST 1 - Zac's Tracs (http://zacstracs.com/Courses/218/ast1)
AST 2 - Zac's Tracs (http://zacstracs.com/FAQ/243/ast2)

Before heading up the trail head or when grouping up with some new riders, ALWAYS do a beacon check. Make a different group member do it each time. You'd be surprised how many guys will have trouble getting their beacon into search mode.

During lunch, or while waiting for white-out conditions to clear, take advantage of the downtime and bury a few beacons to test your friends. Searching for multiple burials should be practiced regularly.

Pass this link around to snowmobilers that are looking for more avy websites and online resources.
Links to avy info (http://www.snowestonline.com/forum/showthread.php?t=38503)

Consider signing up for Zac's newsletters. Check out some of the archived issues and sign up if you find them useful.
Zac's Tracs newsletters (http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs046/1101676125942/archive/1102017706598.html)

Share photos with the CAC or avy instructors. Snowmobile terrain (simple, challenging, complex...all kinds of riding areas. These pics do not need to include avalanches.)
Also send photos of recent avys, wind effects, unusual weather or snow conditions...
Sled specific photos improve courses and teaching materials for everyone.
Send pics to the CAC Forecasters (forecaster@avalanche.ca)
Send pics to Lori's Email (zacstracs@gmail.com)
Post these photos on the forums as well. Be sure to include a short description. Leave out the names if you want to protect your secret riding areas! ;)

Sign up as a Facebook fan
www.avalanche.ca/sled - Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/avalanchecasled/113676193349)
Zac's Tracs - Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Zacs-Tracs/111734399182)
We haven't quite gotten the handle on Facebook yet...but I'm sure my 10 y.o. daughter will catch me up to speed over the summer! :rolleyes:


March 22nd, 2010, 09:19 PM
5 guys have donated $275 so far. Thanks guys!! :d

Sherry's goal (Candles to Remember) is $1000/club or group.
As an online community we are a pretty big group, shouldn't be a problem to blow this target out of the water! Pass the challenge around.

March 23rd, 2010, 03:01 PM
7 guys now, up to $350...looking for at leas $1000

March 23rd, 2010, 03:16 PM
7 guys now, up to $350...looking for at leas $1000

I just made a 250.00 corporate contribution and I challenge all other small business owners and snowmobile associations to do the same. Buck up people as the CAC needs to see our support as they help all of us with up to date info and risk assessment.

Please do it now!

*NEW* Credit Cards for Cash Donations - please follow this link for other options. Online credit card donation to the CAC (http://zacstracs.com/c2r/296/donate)

March 30th, 2010, 02:53 PM
Here's a quick update...

Zac's Tracs began a fundraising drive for the Canadian Avalanche Centre back in October and through 3 separate initiatives we have now collected $3405.

Recognize Donors to the Canadian Avalanche Centre (http://zacstracs.com/c2r/297/donors)

Follow this link to view the donors and consider joining in the effort. Online donations are accepted year round and there is more than one way contribute.

Thanks guys! :)

March 31st, 2010, 08:21 PM
i bought 500 worth of candles.... buck up people...oh ya and all my relatives and freinds.....guess what there getting for xmas...next year...lol

April 8th, 2010, 02:32 PM
There's a newer thread in Snowmobile Chat about media bashing our sport. It discusses an article written by a reporter in Red Deer. In his article, he states that the CAC says that only $2000.00 have been donated by sledders. From the posts above, it seems that info may be inaccurate? I gave a donation recently, but if the CAC does not report the correct amounts that sledders are donating (not saying they aren't, but why the discrepancy) the CAC won't get another dime from me. I'm getting a bit tired of misinformation about sledders and the CAC better report what sledders are donating correctly when the media asks, or I'm done.

April 9th, 2010, 09:54 AM
Feds spend $1.6M to groom snowmobile trails, but only in Quebec (http://www.globalmaritimes.com/entertainment/story.html?id=2577251)

This was posted in snowmobile chat. HOw come the feds can fork over this much for grooming, but next to nothing for avalanche safety?