This month, the Corey Borg-Massanari Foundation, an organization that supports outdoor safety, the purchase and training of dogs for rescue efforts, and provides support to the skiing communities, provided a grant for its first avalanche dog placement.
Corey died tragically in an avalanche in Taos in 2019 and was found by Taos Ski Valley rescue dog, Izzy. Another skier, Matthew Zonghetti, also died in the avalanche.
Finn, an 11-week-old golden retriever puppy, has now become the newest trainee of the Taos Ski Valley avalanche dog team. This elite group of dogs is trained to search and rescue visitors in emergency situations on the mountain. The new puppy was paid for with a grant from the foundation.
"It is amazing to see the foundation's goals be realized with our first avi dog placement in Taos," said Corey's mother and the Advisor of the Corey Borg-Massanari Foundation, Bobbie Gorron. "This foundation's effort to fund outdoor safety initiatives is borne out of our family's tragedy, but I know Corey would be so proud that his love for skiing and dogs led to this bigger impact that will affect other outdoor enthusiasts for years to come."
Finn comes to Taos Ski Valley from Chattanooga, Tennessee, and is from a successful field-trial line of hunting dogs. These dogs have a high drive and are bred for hunting and retrieving, which translates well to search and rescue training.
Finn will be owned and trained by Taos Ski Valley patroller Zackery Anderson. All avalanche dogs are owned by members of the Taos Ski Valley Ski Patrol, and live with them when not working. Leland Thompson, another Taos ski patroller and owner of the avalanche dog who found Corey, assisted with the avalanche dog application process.
Race to the top!
The 15th annual Up & Over Trail run at Taos Ski Valley is speeding towards us.
It happens the first Saturday in August every year and here it is - time to run up 2,612 feet then run back down again. If there ever was a year for trail runners to get out of the house to enjoy Taos Ski Valley's mountain meadows in full bloom and cooler mountain breezes, this is it.
The challenging race route with a technical descent will take runners up to 11,819 feet--that's more than twice the altitude of Denver, the "Mile High" city - bringing them to unique wildflowers and literally breathtaking (if they're running hard enough) views.
"Come challenge your heart and embrace the ascent in our high-altitude playground," said Courtney Tucker, race director and executive director of the Taos Ski Valley Chamber of Commerce. "We encourage trail runners to think of our 10K as a way to push your endurance and challenge your mindset. Our run has the steeps, the rocks, the epic views, the forest shaded wildflowers, the push of stamina to truly make you appreciate your easier training runs."
This year, the ski valley expects 250-300 runners to the mountain.
– Staff report
The print version of this article incorrectly stated that another rescue dog, Izzy, had died. We regret the error.