Earth Issues

Skiers and boarders urged to stay safe for spring break

 | March 14, 2013

As students and families head for the ski slopes this spring break, the Ministry of Justice and the Canadian Avalanche Centre (CAC) want to remind skiers and boarders to respect the ski area boundaries and closure signs.

Often referred to as ‘slackcountry’, slang for terrain outside of ski boundaries that is accessible by chairlift, these areas can pose the same risk and deserve the same respect from skiers and boarders as the backcountry.

“I . . . want to encourage everyone to make sure that they are aware of the dangers that come with ducking the rope. This is especially important for parents to discuss with their children,” said Shirley Bond, Minister of Justice and Attorney General.

It’s important that those who venture out-of-bounds take all the necessary precautions and that all recreation enthusiasts who choose to do so recognize they’re taking some measure of personal risk.

“Crossing a boundary rope is a big decision,” said Karl Klassen, acting executive director for the Canadian Avalanche Centre. “Once you’re outside the ski area boundaries you’re in the backcountry and you need to be able to take care of yourself and your partners. That means avalanche rescue equipment, first-aid supplies and awareness of the risk you’re taking.”

Snowpack stability changes constantly throughout the winter. Backcountry users need to check the avalanche bulletin regularly to keep informed of conditions in their area. Get the most recent bulletin and weather forecasts at:

For more information see: