Avalanche Info Center
By statute, snow avalanches are listed as a geological hazard. In 1987, the COLORADO AVALANCHE INFORMATION CENTER (CAIC) became part of the Colorado Geological Survey, but was separated from CGS in 2013 under HOUSE BILL 13-1057. It was an honor to have a program that is recognized nationally and internationally for its excellence, and that clearly demonstrates it saves lives on the highways and backcountry of Colorado.
The CAIC offers avalanche-safety classes to many thousands of folks each winter. The classes cover all levels of expertise, from avalanche safety for the novice to professional training for avalanche workers and meteorologists. These and other efforts have been successful in eliminating deaths on Colorado’s highways, and reducing deaths in the backcountry even though backcountry use has drastically increased in popularity.
Twice a day the CAIC issues forecasts of avalanche and mountain weather conditions. The products are available on the Center’s website, seven recorded phone messages, and a variety of media outlets. Many folks believe that CAIC puts out the best weather forecasts for the mountainous parts of the state. They maintain and receive data from twelve remote weather stations as well as numerous observers around the state. The CAIC’s main office is located within the National Weather Service’s Weather Forecast Office in Boulder, with seven field offices in Breckenridge, Carbondale, Crested Butte, Leadville, Marble, Telluride, Silverton, Pagosa Springs, and at the Eisenhower Tunnel.
The CGS online bookstore still contains past publications on snow avalanches, many of these are free downloads.