Watch Greg’s video below to learn the rules and find out why they are important for you too – then scroll down to our interview with Greg to learn more about the life experiences that shaped them.
Greg, let’s start with the obvious: tell use about that avalanche!
May 15th 2014. Deep in the heart of Pakistan, at 5500m, as far from rescue as possible. I only broke my leg, but was very lucky to have lived at all. It was only 30cm high, but it was a few hundred meters across, but the entire feature that I was skiing slid for about 700m vertically.
What did you do wrong?
There was simply nowhere to go – and that was my technical mistake. What I did wrong was skiing a feature with no escape routes or safe spots. I skied like I was able to outrun an avalanche. A small ski cut would have triggered the thing and I would have been on top. But the bigger rule I broke was rule number one – not being afraid enough. I also broke rule number two – the partners I had there weren’t my normal partners. My normal partners would have questioned me more. They didn’t question me enough. Did they learn something from this? I bet they did.
Why did you need to be in that avalanche?
The funny thing is, I had lasted so many years without any issues – I needed that slide to keep my ego in check. There weren’t red flags popping up. We had waited a bunch of days for the snow to settle. The mountains were dormant. But I still broke the rules.
What’s your biggest tip to help you follow the rules?
Keep asking yourself questions. As you’re hiking up. Am i being afraid? Am I well-trained? Do I have the knowledge to back my decisions? Are my partners adding more? Always remember – you don’t know you're making poor decisions, until you experience a consequence.
What can we learn from you next?
This is a lead-in to my terrain tricks video – we’ll discuss concrete, tangible terrain decisions that will help you find ways to wander around the mountains and stay safe.
Stay tuned for more mountain advice from Greg Hill in December!