On January 20, 2003, at 10:45 a.m., a massive avalanche in the Selkirk Range of British Columbia struck three members of two guided backcountry skiing groups and buried them. After a frantic hour of digging by those still standing, an unthinkable outcome became reality: seven people were dead.
The tragedy made international news, splashing photos of the seven dead Canadian and US skiers on television screens and newspaper pages. The official analysis was that guide error was not a contributing factor in the accident. This interpretation was insufficient for some of the victims’ families, the public and some members of the guiding community.
Buried is the assistant guide’s story. It renders an answerable truth about what happened by delving deep into the human factors that played into putting people in harm’s way as well as the peace that comes from accountability and the personal growth that results from understanding.