Avalanche Awareness Outreach in Hopedale

Avalanche Canada field technician Drew Nylen recently visited Hopedale, NL for avalanche awareness and training

Avalanche Canada field technician Drew Nylen speaking to high school students in Hopedale, NL.

This April, Avalanche Canada field technician Drew Nylen visited the town of Hopedale, NL to deliver avalanche awareness and training. The community contacted Avalanche Canada to ask for support in increasing public avalanche awareness for people in Hopedale and they wrote a successful grant to make the initiative happen. We were thrilled to visit.  

Located in Nunatsiuvut, the north of Labrador, Hopedale is bordered by avalanche terrain and experiences avalanches near and within their townsite. Many of the town's residents interact with avalanche terrain as they work and recreate in the area, including youth.

Drew met with the town council, search and rescue, firefighters, the RCMP, and held a general meeting for anyone interested in attending. Drew also presented to high school students and got them outside for hands-on avalanche safety equipment training with transceivers, shovels, and probes. Part of the grant was the delivery of two avalanche tool boxes, each with eight sets of avalanche safety equipment.

Elected Hopedale official Marjorie Flowers championed for this project and we’re grateful for her enthusiasm and support. She planted the initial seed with the federal government grant and hosted Drew throughout his stay in Hopedale. “We absolutely enjoyed having Drew here with us! He is an awesome presenter and all groups he met with were educated well by his knowledge and keen interest in avalanches. He certainly sparked an interest in some residents to train more on this topic and what to do should an avalanche occur in our community. We are very interested in further training in avalanche education.”

We hope to continue this collaboration in avalanche awareness and training with Hopedale, and other northern communities who live in or near avalanche terrain.