How avalanches happen

Skiers and snowboarders experience some harrowing -- and sometimes deadly -- moments when avalanches happen. Here's a look at what triggers a mass of snow and ice to come tumbling down the mountain.
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Skiers and snowboarders experience some harrowing -- and sometimes deadly -- moments when avalanches happen. Here's a look at what triggers a mass of snow and ice to come tumbling down the mountain.

Robert Mittendorf covers civic issues, weather, traffic and how people are coping with the high cost of housing for The Bellingham Herald. A journalist since 1984, he’s also a volunteer firefighter for South Whatcom Fire Authority.