'It swallowed me up': Alta. man recounts crushing avalanche

An Alberta man is crediting his friends and his faith for helping him survive a crushing avalanche that broke his leg and forced him to spend a chilly night in the snow.

See Full Article

Todd Wyatt and a group of friends were skiing near Lake Louise over the weekend when he says he heard a loud cracking noise, like a gunshot.

He looked up and saw a slab of snow barreling towards him.

Wyatt only made it a couple of steps before the snow beneath his feet dropped and the rush of powder began to pile on top of him with enough force to snap his leg.

"It broke my leg as it swallowed me up and poured over top of me and I was in the flow of the snow," he told CTV Calgary in a phone interview from his home in Lacomb, Alta.

Wyatt tried to manoeuvre himself so that he would have some space to breathe, and he shot his hand up so that his friends could find him as the snow settled.

"As it came to a stop I … took a deep breath, expanded my ribs so that I could at least have a breathing spot around my ribs," he said. "And at that last moment I kind of threw my left hand up in the air, I punched it out in front of my face and it came out on the surface."

Wyatt's friends helped dig him out and the group used a satellite phone to call for help. But rescuers couldn't access the site until morning.

The group spent the night on the mountain before a helicopter flew them out the next day.

Once he was off the slope, doctors in Banff, Alta. performed surgery on Wyatt's leg, adding screws into the lower part of the limb.

Wyatt is now safely back home and recovering from his injuries.

With files from CTV Calgary



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • N.S. political leaders enter final stretch of campaigning ahead of vote Tuesday

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia's political leaders are back on the campaign trail today as they enter the final stretch before Tuesday's election. Liberal Premier Stephen McNeil is staying close to the Halifax area, while Progressive Conservative Jamie Baillie is hitting several ridings spreading out from Bedford to Amherst. Source
  • Tractor-trailer crashes into famed Nevada brothel

    World News CTV News
    LAS VEGAS -- A man wearing body armour and a mask backed a tractor-trailer through the gate of the Moonlite Bunny Ranch before dawn Thursday and crashed it into the front door of the famed Nevada brothel featured in the CatHouse reality television show, according to authorities and the brothel's owner. Source
  • Militants open fire on bus carrying Christians in Egypt, killing at least 26

    World News CTV News
    CAIRO -- Masked gunmen opened fire on a bus carrying Coptic Christians south of the Egyptian capital on Friday, killing at least 26 people, including children, and wounding 25, officials said. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, which came on the eve of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Source
  • Manchester terrorist Salman Abedi filmed taking bins out months before horrific attack on concert

    World News Toronto Sun
    LONDON — He was quiet and withdrawn, a college dropout who liked soccer — and, some say, showed alarming signs of being radicalized years before he walked into a pop concert at Britain’s Manchester Arena and detonated a powerful bomb, killing himself and 22 others. Source
  • 'Terrified' Houdini of Alabama death row Tommy Arthur put to death after averting seven attempts

    World News Toronto Sun
    ATMORE, Ala. — A man once dubbed the “Houdini” of Alabama’s death row after averting seven prior execution dates was put to death Friday, capping years of litigation challenging the humaneness of lethal injection. Tommy Arthur, 75, was pronounced dead at 12:15 a.m. Source
  • Why this N.S. community wants to 'up the priority' on a Lyme disease vaccine

    Canada News CBC News
    There's trouble in Paddy Lounsbury's paradise. The Nova Scotia woman lives on a picturesque property just outside Mahone Bay that's surrounded by forest and has a view of the ocean. What worries her these days is what she can't see crawling in the grass and waiting in her pine trees. Source
  • Trump meeting with G7 leaders after going on offensive

    World News CTV News
    TAORMINA, Italy -- In the Middle East, U.S. President Donald Trump was feted with pageantry, the leaders of Saudi Arabia and Israel seemingly in competition to outdo the other with the warmth of their welcomes and the depth of their pledges of co-operation. Source
  • Republican Gianforte wins Montana race after assault charge

    World News CTV News
    BOZEMAN, Mont. -- Greg Gianforte spent the day of his greatest political victory out of sight, avoiding questions about the assault charge filed against him on the eve of a congressional race that some cast as a referendum on Donald Trump's presidency. Source
  • New arrest in Manchester blast investigation

    World News CTV News
    MANCHESTER, England -- British police investigating the Manchester Arena bombing made a new arrest Friday while continuing to search addresses associated with the attacker who killed 22 people. Seven other men are in custody in connection with Monday's blast, all are being held on suspicion of offences violating the Terrorism Act. Source
  • U.K. opposition leader links terror to foreign wars

    World News CTV News
    MANCHESTER, England -- British police investigating the Manchester Arena bombing made a new arrest Friday while continuing to search addresses associated with the attacker who killed 22 people. Seven other men are in custody in connection with Monday's blast, all are being held on suspicion of offences violating the Terrorism Act. Source