Avalanche engineering

Snowgliding phenomena at le Brévent - Chamonix Mont Blanc

The Compagnie du Mont Blanc (CMB) had a frequent issue of snowgliding on an area which dominates the busy ‘’Cornu’’ ski slope. The unpredictability of the moment, when the phenomenon can degenerate into an avalanche, and the absence of effective means to provoke it has led to the (too long) closure of this ski slope which remains a main axis on this sector.

The CMB wanted to solve this problem without compromising the ‘’ski ability’’ of the whole area (with snow nets for instance). These reasons prompted the use of wood-sleeves to increase the roughness of the ground by refining the technique of our Swiss neighbors.

Work provided by Engineerisk:
  • - Field survey and topographical analyzes to define the main area subject to snow gliding
  • - Location on the plan of the wood-sleeves network to be installed
  • - Sizing of anchors according to snow gliding loads
  • - Quantitative and budget estimate
  • - Location on site with development of a heliborne protocol to install at bets the wood-sleeves.
  • Since the wood-sleeves were installed, the snow gliding phenomenon was no longer manifested on this area…