1 Jun 2012

At 1000 meters the snow is all but gone! Amazing at how quickly it melted. In the alpine the snow pack is also diminishing.

A video from Gaper day:  From Unofficial

South American Beacon Project: Sending Beacons

Avalanche Research:

Pigs Buried Alive for Avalanche Research! 
EcoWorldly January 17th, 2010
In order to save human lives and study the effects of being buried in avalanches, researchers buried live pigs in snow while monitoring them as they died. The research was conducted in order to better understand the effects of oxygen deprivation from being buried in the snow as well as study the timescale of death. A total of 29 pigs were part of the two-week study.
Earlier this week, an international group of scientists sedated the animals and then buried them under the snow in the Tyrol region of the Austrian Alps. Some of the pigs were completely buried and suffocated. Other pigs, covered up to their necks, reportedly froze to death.
Scientists from Austria’s Medical University of Innsbruck and Italy’s Institute of Mountain Emergency Medicine, conducted the controversial avalanche research. Those involved in the study defended their research saying the animals did not experience any unnecessary suffering because they were sedated and given an anesthetic prior to burial. Dr. Hermann Brugger, co-director of the study, told the Associated Press, “We want to save lives, that’s the only goal of this study.”
According to a statement posted on the Medical University’s website on January 15th, since testing can not be conducted on people and because no virtual testbed to stimulate avalanche survival conditions exists, there is no “alternative to animal experiments.”
The Austrian Association of Animal Protection said, “The scientists should bury themselves, and their colleagues can analyze the results.” Following a public outcry, protests from animal rights groups and intense media coverage, the “barbaric” research has been stopped – temporarily.