ALL NEWS

18 years ago, survivor of a deadly avalanche lost three friends

Dec 30, 2021, 7:50 AM | Updated: 8:04 am
avalanche friends...
Close knit group of friends broken up after an avalanche took the lives of three. Photo: KSL TV

UTAH COUNTY — The survivor of a deadly avalanche in Utah County is still healing after losing his three friends. Matt Long offers a message of caution to those backcountry skiers and snowboarders who could fall victim to a similar fate. 

KSL TV’s Andrew Adams spoke to Matt Long, 18 years after an incident that remains firm in his memory. 

Long was snowboarding with a group of friends on Dec. 26, 2003, in an area outside of Sundance Mountain Resort near Aspen Grove. The group was planning for a final run.

Long told KSL TV, “Right about when we got to the mouth of the chute… I looked up and saw a 50-foot wall of white. Scariest thing I’ve ever seen in my life! The noise was unreal.”

Long was able to dig himself out of the first avalanche and make his way to a group of trees. There, he braced himself as avalanche after avalanche came down.

When the fourth one finally ended, I was up to my armpits with how I was holding myself. By the grace of God, I was able to scoop snow away.

When the last avalanche passed, Long attempted to find his friends and placed a call to 911. However, search and rescue was not able to save two of Long’s friends.


Other Stories:

Today’s Top Stories

All News

A new Utah population estimate finds that most of the people that moved to or within Utah between J...
Simone Seikaly

Utah population update: 60K+ people have moved here since 2021

The Utah population spike noted this year is the greatest increase in 16 years. However, growth is expected to decline going forward.
15 hours ago
Ballet West "Nutcracker" battle scene....
Waverly Golden

Ballet West continues longstanding tradition, The Nutcracker

Until Dec. 24, Ballet West will be showing performances of The Nutcracker at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre in Salt Lake City.
15 hours ago
video game...
Elizabeth Weiler

BYU students win international award for video game

SALT LAKE CITY — Students apart of the animation program at BYU received international recognition from the Rookie Awards for developing and producing a video game. Additionally, the “Highly Commended” also helped BYU earn the global ranking of fifth top video game design school.  The interactive computer game in question is titled Liminus: The Silent Guard, it […]
15 hours ago
provo police car is pictured, the department is investigation a hit-and-run...
Samantha Herrera

21-year-old woman killed in Provo hit-and-run

21-year-old Isabelle Parr was identified as the victim of a hit-and-run in Provo on Thursday. Police believe she was hit while jogging.
15 hours ago
lake effect snow really did a number on the wasatch front this morning...
Jennifer Gray, CNN meteorologist

Back-to-back winter storms bring heavy snow, critical fire conditions to the West

Two winter storms in less than a week will bring more than a foot of snow to the mountains, wind gusts of over 70 mph leading to the possibility of a wall of dust and the high danger of fire to the central and western US.
15 hours ago
Erin mendenhall and two men are pictured at a podium speaking about crime statistics in salt lake...
Samantha Herrera

Project Safe Neighborhoods successfully lowering crime according to Salt Lake leaders

Crime in Salt Lake City has been the focus of Project Safe Neighborhoods for the past two years. Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall praised the project.
15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...
Macey's

5 game day snacks for the whole family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The best tools for Deaf and hard-of-hearing workplace success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
christmas decorations candles in glass jars with fir on a old wooden table...
Western Nut Company

12 Mason Jar Gift Ideas for the 12 Days of Christmas [with recipes!]

There are so many clever mason jar gift ideas to give something thoughtful to your neighbors or friends. Read our 12 ideas to make your own!
wide shot of Bear Lake with a person on a stand up paddle board...

Pack your bags! Extended stays at Bear Lake await you

Work from here! Read our tips to prepare for your extended stay, whether at Bear Lake or somewhere else nearby.
young boy with hearing aid...
Sorenson

Accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing

These different types of accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing can help them succeed in school.
18 years ago, survivor of a deadly avalanche lost three friends