Two climbers have been killed by an avalanche in the North-East couloir of the Pic du Midi de Bigorre around 8h00 today. The group of 3 local climbers, said to be experienced and properly equipped had set off at 4h00. The group were caught at around 2300 meters altitude. The survivor, who was partially buried by the slide, was able to give the alert by telephone.
The couloir is described as a fairly difficult climb. The climbers were caught at the start of some hard mixed climbing with a slope 50°. The weather was poor in the area with low cloud and strong winds. The couloir is around 1000 meters of climbing and can also be skied (rating 5.1/E2)
The avalanche risk was 2 (moderate) moving to 3 (considerable) during the course of the day. Snow was described as dry and cold above 2400 meters altitude on north slopes with the risk of small purges on steep slopes of the snow that had fallen during Saturday.