Associate Editor

The Inertia

Many resorts across Colorado are closing up shop for the season, if they haven’t done so already, after an especially snowy winter. The end of the resort season means it’s time to get out and hike or even do some spring touring in the high country. The Colorado Department of Transportation is warning backcountry users to be on the lookout for undetonated avalanche charges.

According to Fox 31 Denver, this season with the amount of snow seen across the state, CDOT deployed some 1,500 explosives for avalanche mitigation. Of those, 22 either did not detonate or were duds.

A CDOT spokesperson explained the state agency is currently working to recover the explosives, but many of them are likely buried in the snow and will be difficult to find until it melts. It’s, therefore, a possibility a hiker or backcountry skier or rider could come across a charge before CDOT does.


“Our team is tracking where those un-exploded ordinances are, but you may come upon them before we do,” warned Tracy Trulove of CDOT.

She explained the explosives “look like small torpedoes and are brightly colored.” People should obviously back away and notify authorities immediately if they come upon one, the agency said.

“It’s an explosive, so you definitely don’t want to do anything to move it,” Trulove told Fox 31 Denver. “A lot of times, it is just a dud and nothing will occur, but you want a team of trained professionals to detonate or disarm the explosive.”



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