Archive for avalanche

deaths on Mont Maudit (and bad graph)

Posted in Mountains, Statistics, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 14, 2012 by xi'an

A large avalanche on one of the most classical routes to the summit of Mont Blanc early yesterday morning alas caught several groups climbing towards Mont Blanc and most sadly killed nine of them, including the BMC former secretary Roger Payne. It was triggered by a sérac fall above the route, always a possibility in this area whose name says it all… At a very minor level, compared with those tragic deaths, let me point out that The Guardian reported on this tragic accident with the following “bad graph”, which apparently gives the number of deaths on each accident (month?) with no consideration for the time (first axis). In other words, the barplot is missing all the zeroes. (It also missed the group of two who died from exhaustion in the Jorasses last November…)

This is not the right post to elaborate on the announcement that the next MCM’ski conference will take place in Chamonix, presumably on January 6-8, 2014. I am currently waiting for a formal proposal from the conference bureau in Chamonix… Nor on the incoming creation of a computational Bayes (BayesComp) ISBA section [if enough ISBA members support this creation].

Two U of Toronto professors die on Denali

Posted in Mountains, Running, University life with tags , , , , on June 28, 2010 by xi'an

When looking for Radford Neal’s page in the CS department of U of T, I came upon this very sad item of news, namely that (climber and) Professor Avner Magen have been killed last month in an avalanche on Denali, along with Professor Andrew Herzenberg from the Faculty of Medicine at University Health Network. There is a donation site to support Avner’s family.

Avalanche on Ben Nevis

Posted in Mountains with tags , , on January 1, 2010 by xi'an

Two climbers died on Ben Nevis yesterday when climbing in the area of Number 3 Gully. They were caught in a large avalanche there…  (Another avalanche in  Central Gully saw one broken leg.) This reminded me of the time when Ivan and I climbed this gully with guide Alan Kimber and when Alan started a small avalanche that hit the group of climbers behind us, without any consequence, thankfully. Scottish weather can be gruesome, even at very low altitudes… There is a good reason for Scotland to be the ice-climbing birthplace!