Skier Captures Harrowing POV Footage of His Close Call With an Avalanche While Skiing Down a Mountain

Mountaineer Owen Leeper skillfully kept his wits about him as an unexpected snow avalanche swept him up and drove him down the mountain while backcountry skiing in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. He captured the entire harrowing experience through first-person (POV) footage.

The avalanche forecast was moderate, with sunny skies, temps were in the high 20s at upper elevation. I scoped the chute a couple days ago. I wasn’t too worried about an avalanche, because we had several days of settling since the last storm and the wind was keeping the snow cool so wet slides weren’t on my mind either. 

The unforeseen rush of snow pushed Leeper far below his starting point before he could regain his balance. It was certainly a close call but luckily, the only injuries he sustained were a dislocated shoulder and minor abrasions.

Once I hit the first rock I knew I had to keep my feet under me, for the rock in the middle was about to hit, my skis launched me into the wall, I was able to get my hands up and catch myself before hitting my face, likely popping my shoulder out at that time. I tried hard to keep my feet below me, knowing I had another rock band to clear. Miraculously I bounced over the last section of rocks into the snow.

Here’s a macro view of Leeper’s slide down the mountain.

via The Awesomer

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.