Granted, it's pretty hard to get a deadly avalanche going through cornfields.

Several people I know have taken to calling this winter "The Winter That Just Wouldn't Die." And, while it's true we've taken everything that Mother Nature can throw at us this winter season, at least we don't have to worry about one of the biggest cold-weather killers.

According to National Geographic:

Avalanches kill more than 150 people worldwide each year. Most are snowmobilers, skiers, and snowboarders. Many avalanches are small slides of dry powdery snow that move as a formless mass. These "sluffs" account for a tiny fraction of the death and destruction wrought by their bigger, more organized cousins.

Disastrous avalanches occur when massive slabs of snow break loose from a mountainside and shatter like broken glass as they race downhill. These moving masses can reach speeds of 80 miles (130 kilometers) per hour within about five seconds. Victims caught in these events seldom escape.


Thankfully, the dueling avalanches in Colorado over the weekend caused some serious traffic difficulties, but didn't hurt anyone.

So, say what you want about the winter weather we've been dealing with here in the Rockford area (and believe me, we have), at least there's one scary aspect of the winter that we don't have to face.

Here's a look at what it's like to get caught in an avalanche:

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