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Digging Deeper – Brian Lazar


“I was an aspiring mountain guide. I was 19 years old. I had completed my introductory avalanche training and was excited to ski further and deeper into the backcountry. With our newly developing skills, a good friend of mine and I headed out for day of backcountry skiing. We made a plan, but it took longer to get to our desired slope than we expected. In our haste to beat the dwindling sunlight, we decided to descend a steeper line that would get us back to the car more quickly.

It was a bad call. I went first and after my third turn, saw the snow break around me. I was quickly knocked forward, face down, snow rushing over the back of me. I came to rest fully buried, but less than a foot under the snow. Fortunately, per our training, my partner watched me closely during the entire event. He was able to quickly ski over to me and extricate me from the snow in less than two minutes.

I was uninjured, but shaken. I was fortunate enough to survive a bad decision early in my career, and the lessons I learned stick with me today. In my two and half decades working and playing in avalanche terrain since then, I have lost friends to avalanches. I have had some close calls. I have learned that humility in the mountains is key to a long life in avalanche country.”

– Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) Deputy Director, Brian Lazar


We love the snow community here in Colorado. It is our responsibility and mission to raise awareness, educate and provide the best avalanche products to our users throughout the state. But, we cannot do it without you.

Today marks the beginning of our 7 day “Digging Deeper” $40,000 fundraising campaign. Each day we will dig deeper into the CAIC and its forecasters. A daily email will be sent featuring a forecaster, his/her personal story, and take you inside the operations of CAIC.

In return, we ask that you dig as deep as you can into your pockets and help us raise $40,000 for the continued sustainability and development of our avalanche center. Can we do it? We think so.


– Donate at Even a donation of $20 goes a long way!

– Send a gift by check to: Friends of CAIC, PO Box 267, Grand Junction, CO 81502

– Visit Friends of CAIC at one of our events and donate directly. Check out our event calendar by clicking here.

– Call, text, email, and share Friends of CAIC’s social posts with your backcountry partners and community regarding the campaign. Ask your friends/family to share our efforts with 3-5 people they know!

Let’s do this! Donate now!

Upcoming Events


Raise a Glass!

Thursday, March 22
Rocky Mountain Underground, Breckenridge
RMU has invited us back for a party! Live music, raffle and cheersing to CAIC. Learn more here.


Together in Telluride

Wednesday, April 4
Brown Dog Pizza, Telluride
Let’s rally, San Juan community, for a night in Telluride! Come hungry, thirsty and ready to party. Learn more here.


A Night at the ‘Boat

Friday, April 6
Schmiggity’s, Steamboat Springs
This blast of a fundraiser is back! Let’s dance the night away in support of your avalanche center. Learn more here.

Featured Follower

Tag us for a chance to be featured!

@friendsofcaic | #friendsofcaic


“Although the snowpack is beginning to slowly stabilize, we are still dealing with deep persistent slab issues and it’s still important to choose slopes wisely and think about and have a plan for your entire tour. Remember to check the CAIC website or app for updated conditions before venturing out into the backcountry. Know before you go.”

– Friends of the San Juans, @friendsofthesanjuans

Connect with us!

Copyright © 2017 Friends of Colorado Avalanche Information Center, All rights reserved.

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