Originally Posted by dwf137
The dangers there are tree wells and avalanches. They control the inbounds areas, and close dangerous areas. No need to worry too much in bounds. Out of bounds though, It takes a lot of snow knowledge. It can be very tempting because it's just on the other side of a rope, but it's closed for a reason. Stay out unless you're with a local and you have the avy gear.
Tree wells are a danger even inbounds. Best way to stay safe is to always ride with a buddy and keep in sight. That means stopping periodically to look back if you're in the lead. Keep a whistle easily accessible as well, I have one on the chest strap of my backpack. Read up on them. Self rescue is almost impossible.
So true. I got caught in one one the backside of Stevens Pass. Was riding with three people and I was in the back. It was a relatively safe situation or well traveled area to put it. But there was a sharp banked turn that I couldn't see because we were sort of racing through that area. They both hit the turn and I went flying since I didn't see it. I landed stomach down and then slid head first into the well. I was head to knees deep. I panicked and started struggling like crazy. Scariest thing. I finally just stopped being frantic and was able to work my way out. They couldn't find me, but after a half hour I was able to get out. Only time in my life I genuinely thought I was toast.