Meesh Hytner was doing typical pro-snowboarder things, participating in an informal backcountry competition in Colorado, when suddenly she found herself in a class-3 avalanche. Lucky for her, she was wearing an emergency airbag system, and lucky for you, there's video.

Meesh (I love that name) was wearing a Backcountry Access Float 30, and it very possibly saved her life. The airbag allowed her to "float" on her back as the surface beneath her crumbled and swept her down the mountain. Not only did she survive, she was completely unscathed. She told Backcountry Access:

I felt like I was riding a mattress down the stairs... Thank you. This thing saved my life.

Meesh was very lucky. She was able to remain on her back and keep her feet facing downhill in order to keep her head from being smashed on any rocks. Luck aside, anybody who's venturing out on virgin slopes should seriously consider an airbag safety device like this one. Big wave surfers are integrating a similar system in their wetsuits, and it's great to see that the winter-sports version works as advertised. [BCA via GrindTV]