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Backcountry skier killed in avalanche near Berthoud Pass

Posted at 7:48 AM, Mar 08, 2019

DENVER — An employee of a backcountry skiing company died after being caught in an avalanche in the Colorado high country Thursday.

The avalanche occurred a little before 2 p.m. in the Jones Pass area of Clear Creek County, west of Berthoud Pass, according to the Colorado Avalanche Information Center.

The Clear Creek County Sheriff's Office said the backcountry skiing company Powder Addiction reported the avalanche and said a man was buried in the snow.

Employees and guests of Powder Addiction were able to free the man, identified as Powder Addiction employee Hans Berg, 48, of Empire.

Berg was transported to a hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

It’s not clear what caused the avalanche but the slide was one of several that occurred on Thursday as heavy snow continued to fall in the mountains, closing major highways and ski areas. The National Weather Service said Friday that some remote areas have likely received more than eight feet of snow in the past seven days.

READ MORE: Snowstorm creates ‘historic’ avalanche conditions in Colo. mountains; ski areas and highways closed

Avalanche danger remains very high Friday as more snow is expected to fall in the mountains.