Colorado avalanche kills 1, injures 3

VAIL, Colo. — One man died and three other people were injured Tuesday after an avalanche in the backcountry near this ski resort town.

The snow slide happened around 11:30 a.m. MT in the East Vail Chutes between Vail Mountain and Vail Pass, said Jessie Mosher, Eagle County Sheriff's spokeswoman.

The avalanche was triggered near the treeline outside Vail Ski Resort, according to the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. It is not clear whether the people caught in the avalanche were skiing or snowboarding.

On Monday, the center warned of dangerous conditions at all elevations with wide slabs of snow likely to be unstable because of snowfall during the weekend. Though slides in the area are becoming tougher to trigger, the center said when they develop they are large and dangerous.

The three survivors' injuries aren't life threatening, Mosher said. Search and rescue crews are working to get them out of the area about 80 miles west of Denver.

On Dec. 31 in the first Colorado fatality of the 2013-14 ski season, a backcountry snowboarder died east of Steamboat Springs, Colo., after being buried just off the northeast ridge of Parkview Mountain about 90 miles northwest of Denver. Five people have died in avalanches in Colorado, Montana and Wyoming in the past two weeks.

Contributing: The Associated Press


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