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New director chosen for Wallowa Avalanche Center


PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) – A professional ski guide has been named director of the Wallowa Avalanche Center.

The East Oregonian reports ( ) that Victor McNeil succeeds Kip Rand, who died in an avalanche last winter while backcountry skiing near Chief Joseph Mountain in the Eagle Cap Wilderness.

The nonprofit center provides regular updates and observations on avalanche conditions in the Wallowa, Elkhorn and Blue mountains.

Deputy Director Julian Pridmore-Brown said McNeil has broad outdoor experience and knowledge of the local mountains, which makes him a good fit for the position.

Oregon has relatively few avalanche fatalities, but those that occur tend to happen in the northeast part of the state.

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