The words “historic” and “unprecedented” have been thrown around to describe the current avalanche cycle holding Colorado’s mountains firmly in its grasp. Highway 550m connecting Ouray with Silverton via Red Mountain Pass got absolutely pummeled by avalanches over the past few days – most of which were set off intentionally by avalanche control experts. Up to 60 feet of snow were deposited on the road – prompting an indefinite closure of the Highway until conditions are safe enough to clear the road.
Yesterday, helicopter avalanche control operations were performed on more than 20 avalanche paths on three mountain passes in SW CO. As a result of this mitigation, incredible amounts of snow and debris hit the road and require the continued and indefinite closure of Red Mt. Pass.