It was a normal Italian Skiing holiday until something extraordinary happened! AVALANCHE!
This is what everyone fears and on a ski resort they’re quite uncommon, but never doubt the power of nature.
I begin on the ultimate black slope, the slope everyone aims to get on but everyone fears. I get the weirdest feeling in my stomach, I feel it lift to the bottom of my throat and my jaws tighten, as I journey up the mountain in the rickety chair lift. I feel irresistible excitement. When I get to the top I know there’s only one way down, although terrified, I know I have to do it.
Half way down the mountains, someone slips away from our group, hits some ice, loses control and slips into a barrier at the side of the mountain. As they hit the fresh snow they cause an avalanche.
Seeing the snow pummel down the mountain likes waves hitting cliffs.
I don’t know what to do; my body froze because for a split second I thought my life was over. My brain screams “move, move” but my body doesn’t listen. I see five or six black dots half way down the mountain where the avalanche is heading. At first they don’t really look like people, on closer inspection the dots move and have arms, legs and backpacks. Then I see a blue dot start down the hill, our instructor is going down to try and save the people. I am t
hinking “how will he ever outrun it”. He is now along side the man eater; he dips left and is lost in the white powder of the avalanche. Two or Three minutes pass and there is still no sign of our ski instructor, Willie.
There is nothing we can do but watch, and wait and hope for the best. Finally, he we see him come out, wobble and soar on. He is moving as quick as lightning. We now realize that the hikers have no chance. All I can see now is the snow, as white as newly washed clothes and the sky as blue as the ocean. Then the dots disappear, Disaster. We have to get down. We have to get air rescue. Nothing else in the world matters. My brain feels like it is going to explode like an atomic bomb exploding in a car, my skin looks like bubble wrap, raised like Goosebumps. The avalanche devours all the ski runs like a whale does plankton. I know this is going to be hard but I also know that we have to do it. We start off down what’s left of the slopes, the snow is about 2ft deep and our skies are sinking. People are falling left, right and centre but eventually we reached the bottom.
The slopes are evacuated. We rushed over to tell the rescue team that there are still people up there. They quickly get their rescue monsters in motion and munch the snow with their metal tracks like sharks digging their teeth into prey. We stand frozen like statues watching the rescuers as they finally reach the place where the avalanche stops. They are just in time to save Willie and one of the hikers. Willie gets out with just a few bumps and bruises because he is at the edge of the avalanche although it appears that the surviving hiker has a chest and leg injury.
The 5 people that died that day were Italian and climbed that same route every Saturday.
The sky over the resort is now as black as the day is bright the clouds would have lifted by next Saturday.