11 Lone Peak Drive ● Town Center ● Big Sky, Montana ● 406-995-2939 ● Winter Hours 8am - 8pm 7 Days

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The Powder Blast

For years, the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center (GNFAC) has offered data on winter backcountry conditions, as well as provided basic avalanche education. The GNFAC provides information for several mountain ranges surrounding their headquarters in Bozeman and beyond. Grizzly Outfitters actively supports the GNFAC, and works with them to educate skiers, snowboarders, and snowmobilers in the Big Sky area.

The GNFAC daily avalanche advisory is available at their website (www.mtavalanche.com), via email updates, Facebook and your Smartphone (of course!). On average, the advisory reached 4,491 people each day during the 2012-13 season.

The Friends of the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center (FGNFAC) is a non-profit that works to support the GNFAC through fundraising and educational efforts (I blatantly stole that sentence from their Facebook page).

This fall marks the GNFAC’s 24th season in operation, and tomorrow the FGNFAC will hold the 15th annual Powder Blast benefit. It’s my favorite party of the year (after the ones that I throw for Grizzly, obviously). It’s always nice for this Big Sky bumpkin to throw on a dress (ok, more likely a Patagonia sweater of some type) and head into the big city for a night out. The event is held at the Emerson Cultural Center, and always includes phenomenal food, drink, music (bluegrass, due to the high infestation of telemarkers), and a stellar silent auction.

Many a ski bum might balk at the $30 donation cost for entry – but let’s think this through together. A Tasty meal (a buffet, nonetheless), beer/wine, awesome music (Holler n’ Pine), PLUS daily advice that will save your life and education for your friends (so that maybe they can save your life) – all for only $30?

It’s a no-brainer (meaning snowboarders should come too). I’m guessing that folks who don’t frequent fundraisers might be timid – but this is not the time. Do you enjoy the backcountry? Do you love someone who does? See you tonight.

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*I should admit that I am a telemark skier and I date a snowboarder. Any stereotypical references to either subculture were intended to be loving and lighthearted. Feel free to send me a mean email if you'd like - I love hearing from you either way.*

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