Avalanche kills skier near Crested Butte Tuesday morning

By Mark Reaman

A skier caught in an avalanche in the Climax Chutes near Crested Butte was killed Tuesday morning. While the name is not yet being officially released, the skier was a Crested Butte local in his 40s with extensive experience in the backcountry.

According to emergency rescue personnel, the victim was carried into the trees where he sustained traumatic injuries. The Colorado Avalanche Information Center website stated he was “in very steep northeast facing terrain” when he was caught in a wet slab. He was not buried by the slide. Friends on scene attempted resuscitation for an extended period of time.

According to Crested Butte Fire Protections District chief Rob Weisbaum, CB Search and Rescue, the CBFPD, The Mt. Crested Butte police department and the Colorado Avalanche Information Center personnel were on scene.

“We sent an initial crew to the area to evaluate the situation and assess the risks involved and the status of the patient,” he explained. “We were able to maintain contact with the parties involved via cell phone. Trauma cardiac arrests in the backcountry setting are not survivable.

The accident occurred about 10:45 Tuesday morning. Four people were in the ski party and only was caught in the slide.

More details will be in this week’s Crested Butte News.

Our condolences go out to the family and friends of the victim.

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