Here at A3, we’re always on the lookout for photos of really big avalanches—and the same goes for action shots of explosives in action. What could be more eye-catching? This spring, A3 ran a photo contest in partnership with two of our major sponsors, CIL Explosives and PIEPS, and the results were everything we’d hoped for. 

The Winners

Congratulations to Alan Gordon and Ken Snoy, who ran away with the top two spots. Their images are below.

Alan Gordon’s winning shot. Alan, who is an A3 Lifetime Professional Member, is the Avalanche Program Director at Couer Alaska.
Ken Snoy’s winning shot. Ken is an A3 Pro Member and a member of the Snowbasin Ski Patrol. “This is a sunrise photo of me setting up an avalauncher shot at Snowbasin Resort,” he explains. “We use CIL tail fins on our rounds.”

The Honorable Mentions

We loved this throwback shot, taken on the south side of Red Mountain Pass in 1982, from A3 Pro Member and weather expert Jerry Roberts. “I was continuing research on San Juan Avalanche Project/INSTAAR and living in the old cabin below in old townsite of Chattanooga, which was a supply town for the mines up on Red in the very old days,” he says.

A3 Pro Member Charles Hlavac submitted this video, which includes a 15lb and 25lb ANFO shots, from his work at Teton Pass Ski Area in North Central Montana.

Thanks to A3 Pro Member William Marsh for this video submission.

Thanks to A3 Pro Member Travis Laverty for this video submission.

CIL Sponsor Logo

Thanks to everyone who submitted photos this season, and please keep an eye out for future opportunities! 

Huge thanks to our sponsor CIL for making this contest (and much of A3’s other work) possible. CIL donates a percentage of US sales to A3, so when you buy explosives from them, you’re helping your professional organization.

Have a photo you’d like to see in The Avalanche Review, either in print or online? Send your best shots to for a chance to be featured. We’re always interested in shots of avalanches in action and remarkable slide paths.