Beacon Basin opens for avalanche practice |

Beacon Basin opens for avalanche practice

Jane Stebbins

BRECKENRIDGE – Breckenridge Ski Resort and Backcountry Access are teaming up to offer the only avalanche transceiver practice site in Colorado on Peak 8.Breckenridge and Access, the manufacturer of The Tracker avalanche transceiver, are offering skiers the chance to practice their beacons in mock avalanches in a new area called Beacon Basin.Beacon Basin is about 10,000 square feet and located just north of the Vista Haus near the top of the Colorado SuperChair lift.Breckenridge Ski Patrol will prepare the area each day by burying anywhere from one to seven transceivers. Probe poles will be available on site so skiers can practice searches. Skiers must bring their own beacons, though, and replace the transmitter once they have located it. Ski patrol also asks people to sign in at the entrance gate logbook before beginning their search.Will Barrett, Breckenridge Ski Patrol avalanche specialist, said it’s important for backcountry enthusiasts to practice using their beacons, particularly since many skiers don’t review their proper use each time they head out to backcountry.”You can have the best equipment in the world,” he said, “but if you don’t know how to use it, it’s basically worthless.”Beacon Basin will be open daily from 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. For additional information, contact the Breckenridge Ski Patrol at (970)496-7294.Vail, Colorado

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