- In Avalanche and Tree-alanche, get a powerful collection of sliding snow and ice from the pristine wilderness of the Eastern Cascades, Washington. Hear massive slabs of snow break free and tumble down mountains with majestic power. Hear chunky slides as refrigerator-sized chunks of ice careen down slopes and waterfalls of powder moving like rivers of sand. Hear tree-alanches as snow and ice plastered to branches is dislodged by sun-melt and wind. Hear hellacious debris clouds as gusts hit local canopies and dislodge snow hurricanes of powder, ice, and branches.
- This library offers you a collection of sounds from an awe inspiring natural event. Avalanches are dangerous and extremely difficult to record. They have the natural power akin to tornadoes or wildfires. I hope you enjoy listening to the roars of wintertime in the remote mountains of Washington.
- 15 avalanches total
- 2 avalanches in quad
- 13 avalanches in stereo only
- What is a tree-alanche? This sound is created when cached snow on branches is dislodged by wind or sun melt.
- 45 tree-alanches in quad
- Each tree-alanche is between 15 and 90 seconds
- If you need long ambiences with tree-alanches and falling snow, check out Pacific Northwest: Falling Snow.
RECORDING STORIES – The Roar of Avalanches
***Disclaimer – learn about winter safety before attempting to record avalanches. This type of recording can be extremely dangerous. Consult a local expert and learn how to travel and record safely in winter conditions.
A local mountaineer took me out snowshoeing in the Eastern Cascades. We hiked up into a large basin with majestic mountains on all sides. As we sat to eat lunch the sun crested the ridge line and hit the massive cliff face to our west. It began to crack and groan. After a few minutes, the energy of the sun triggered a series of avalanches! I was in awe for the first slide and then scrambled to set up my mics. Avalanches were happening every 5-10 minutes! It was amazing to watch and hear. Some avalanches had a powdery sound, almost like sand. Others sounded like refrigerator sized chunks of ice tumbling down a mountain face. Others had a roar like distant thunder. I was amazed at the length of the event as most avalanches last 30-90 seconds. Some started with a rumble, others with a sharper crack, and all had long decaying tails as the snow and ice tumbled down the mountain side. That day had an incredibly rare set of conditions. The danger of larger avalanches was low, but the sun was triggering smaller slides I could record from a safe distance. I was lucky to experience this afternoon of avalanches and was incredibly thankful to have had a chance to hear the power of this captivating natural event. It is similar to experiencing a tornado or wildfire.
My Double Mid/Side drop-and-record rig was left in the woods in various locations recording for 10 days. During that time, I was lucky to capture two large avalanches. Getting an isolated recording of a large avalanche is incredibly difficult. It is problematic to leave a drop rig close enough to an avalanche chute to get good recordings, but also far enough away that it won’t get buried in tons of snow. A windless night is needed so gusts are not masking the low roar of the avalanche. After days of waiting, I got lucky and a gigantic slide happened about a quarter mile from my mics. It has a lush guttural roar with an immense natural power. Hear that massive slide at the beginning of the avalanche demo.
- View larger version or Download CSV
- A spectrogram is included for each audio file. Double click on the photo in the file list to enlarge.
- Named markers are included in each file to help find interesting events in an otherwise uniform waveform.
- Stereo Only: recorded in AB (L/R) – these recordings do not include a Quad version
- Stereo: Double Mid/Side decoded to Stereo (L/R)
- Quad: Double Mid/Side decoded to Quad (L/R/Ls/Rs)
|Stereo Specs: 2.7 GB – 192 kHz / 24-bit – 56 stereo WAV files – 56+ sounds – Approx. 39 min total|
|Quad Specs: 3.9 GB – 192 kHz / 24-bit – 43 quad WAV files – 43+ sounds – Approx. 28 min total|
Stereo + Quad Specs: 6.6 GB Total – Approx. 39 min total
|Metadata: CSV, Soundminer, BWAV, Text Markers|
Categories: Avalanche, Tree-alanche, Snow & Ice
Location: Washington, Eastern Cascades, Winter 2020
|Mastering: read my Field Recording Mastering Rules for more info.|
|Delivery: Instant - blazingly-fast - digital download|
|License type: Single user, royalty-free - for a multi-user license, click here|
|Sound Library Guarantee: If you're unhappy with my field recordings in any way, I'll give you store credit equal to the cost of the sound library. Read the full details – here.|
- Sennheiser MKH8040 and MKH30 in Double Mid/Side
- Lom Usi
- Sound Devices MixPre-6
- Sony D100
- Cinela Pianissimo Mid/Side Blimp