Avalanche survivor shares his story
FORT COLLINS, Colo. — The survivor of a recent avalanche near Steamboat Springs is sharing his story to raise awareness about the dangerous conditions in Colorado’s mountains and the importance of being prepared.
Jordan Lundstedt and his brother Tyler were caught in an avalanche on January 21st.
“You feel the ground shake, almost like the ground fell,” Jordan says. “I don’t know how much it fell. (I) heard distant thunder and everything started sliding. You’re not seeing anything … you’re kinda panicking at that moment, just trying to tread water to try to stay on top, but you don’t know what directions where at the time. You’re kind of just tumbling.”
Jordan said he got hung up in a tree and was able to dig himself out. He immediately started looking for his brother.
“I didn’t know where he was. I yelled for him instantly when it stopped,” Jordan says. “I didn’t hear anything from him. He was 45 yards down the hill from me, found by an avalanche beacon.”
By the time Jordan reached Tyler, he had already died. Jordan called for help when he could, but it took rescuers about 36 hours to find the brothers.
Jordan built a snow cave and used a couple of emergency blankets he had.
“I knew I had to build a shelter for myself so I wasn’t just out in the wind and snow,” says Jordan. “So I dug a snow cave right next to my brother. I built it just big enough to wedge self in fetal position. Then I wrapped the space blankets.”
Jordan’s father was part of the rescue team. “It was the best moment and worst moment of my life at the same time,” Garry Lundstedt says.
Everyone who knew Tyler describes him as a happy guy who enjoyed snowmobiling and other outdoor activities.
“There’re not many people better than him and there certainly no one that loved it more than him. He’s one of the lucky ones who got to go doing what he loved,” Brian Lundstedt says.
The Lundstedt family has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support. They plan to attend a fundraiser and auction at 100 Octane Bar in Fort Collins Friday night.
The money raised will go to avalanche research groups and survival training organizations. They hope to spare other families the heartache they’ve experienced.
“I’m doing as good as I can be. I miss him. Miss my big brother, my best friend,” says Jordan.
Click here for more information about the Tyler Lundstedt Memorial Fund.