Six people were caught in an avalanche in the backcountry near Whistler, B.C., Tuesday morning, RCMP have confirmed.

Police say the Blackcomb ski patrol received an emergency call from the group on the Spearhead Glacier, northeast of Blackcomb, at about 11:20 a.m. PT.

One person who was buried by the slide for four minutes was pulled out unconscious by the others in the group, according to Staff Sgt. Steve Leclair.

Spearhead Glacier, B.C.Spearhead Glacier near Whistler, B.C.

The victim was resuscitated and evacuated by helicopter to the Whistler Health Care Centre. Rescue crews brought the rest of the group out of the area.

The avalanche, rated as a Class 2 in size, occurred in the Corona Bowl on the Spearhead Glacier in Garibaldi Provincial Park commonly used by backcountry ski touring groups.

The area is not part of the Whistler Blackcomb Resort and the area was not closed to backcountry travellers at the time.

The avalanche danger for the Whistler Backcountry area was rated as moderate at the time. 


One of the skiers was rescued by the group after spending about four minutes trapped under the snow. (Avalanche photo and video submitted by Mark Steffens)


  • The RCMP originally said the slide was on the "Spearman Glacier," but skiers who witnessed the slide said it was actually on the Spearhead Glacier.
    Mar 19, 2013 2:00 AM PT