Backcountry Skier Falls 1,300-Feet to Death in 3/4 Couloir in Banff National Park, AB

SnowBrains |
3/4 couloir, canada, Banff National Park,
Dropping into the 3/4 couloir. Credit: Reddit

A 30-year-old Calgary skier has died following an accident in Banff National Park, AB on Saturday, RCMP reported.

The man and his group of five were skiing classic line the 3/4 Couloir above Moraine Lake. The group was descending when the victim fell the length of the slope.

An eyewitness told Rocky Mountain Outlook:

“Something went wrong and he lost control. He tumbled about 400 meters to his death to the rocks on the fan below.”

– Paul Clarke, eyewitness

moraine lake, Canada, Alberta, Banff national park,
Moraine Lake, AB. Credit: LORENA LARA | Unsplash

The man was pronounced dead at the scene. No other injuries were reported among the group.

3/4 couloir is between peak 3 (Bowlen) and peak 4 (Tonsa) of the over 10,000-foot peaks surrounding Moraine Lake. The 3/4 is one of the more commonly climbed and skied lines.

Moraine Lake is a glacially-fed lake in Banff National Park, 14 kilometers (8.7 mi) outside the Village of Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada. It is situated in the Valley of the Ten Peaks, at an elevation of approximately 1,884 meters (6,181 ft). The lake has a surface area of 50 hectares (120 acres).

The lake, being glacially fed, does not reach its crest until mid to late June. When it is full, it reflects a distinctive shade of azure blue. The unique color is due to the refraction of light off the rock flour deposited in the lake on a continual basis by surrounding glaciers.

Red pin marks Moraine Lake
Ascending 3/4 couloir. Credit: backcountryskiingcanada

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