View Full Version : ground penetrating radar?

March 21, 2002, 23:18
I'm looking for a body in avalanche debris 10-45 feet deep with maximum snow density(our aluminum stuff is useless, changed to sharpened steel shovels and steel tank antenna probes pounded with sledges).

I've heard rumors about g.p.r. that indicate it can accurately differentiate material densities in deep, dense snowpack. Actually, I don't know (or care) how it works. Anyone have any experience with it or other techno stuff that could do the job(have been known to sometimes be able to keep a secret).

Area is not accessible except by foot, helo or possibly snowmobile so unit has to be light and compact. Some of search area is moderately technical cliff bands with crampon/ax access.

Be nice to recover ASP as we have released upper loading zones with charges. More snow/wind and they'll be hot again. Otherwise will be forced to wait till melt and that gets a bit rude. Would like to provide closure to family if we can achieve reasonable safety.

March 22, 2002, 06:25

These folks do the surveys. It's not something you can purchase/borrow and use effectively. Reading the output is like reading an X-Ray.

March 22, 2002, 07:34
I've used it a few times to locate underground utilities and check the integrity of tower foundations. Here is the company we used out of Georgia.

I would suggest giving them a call. Normally, I dont think GPR is effective to the depths you're looking at here, but it cant hurt to check.


March 22, 2002, 10:27
btt, thanks for the leads.

March 22, 2002, 11:00
The deepest we've been able to get decent resolution with GPR is ~15 feet. This wasnt in snow however and I do not know the relative reflectivity of snow. However, I imagine you could get deeper with a more powerful unit.

March 22, 2002, 11:47
In some of the more accessible areas, you might want to try a cadaver dog to get a zero in on the location. Might be a good training exercise for some agency.

[ March 22, 2002: Message edited by: Krathis ]

mountain man
March 22, 2002, 13:22
Speaking of cadaver dogs, you might want to call the Montrose County Sherrifs Office and ask for officer Scott Wagner. He has a bloodhound named Cissy who finds cadavers- I don't remember if she's retired yet. (970)249-6606

Farmer from Hell
March 22, 2002, 19:55
I worked with GPR once and Id say you be hard pressed to operate a unit like what I used on an avalanche area. Kind of need a semi flat surface or someplace you can wheel a small cart over. Just imagine a small cart with a laptop in the basket and dragging a cement block suspended underneath just barely scraping the ground. They have other types of devices that require vibrateing the ground or striking it but I am assumeing that is out of the question.


Finally got me a Jobby Job Joel...!