Body recovered from avalanche

Corinne Westeman
cwesteman@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 2/14/21

Officials recovered a body after an avalanche in the area of Mount Trelease, north of Loveland, on Sunday morning.

The Alpine Rescue Team, along with the Clear Creek Sheriff's Office, responded to …

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Body recovered from avalanche

Posted

Authorities have confirmed that the victim of Sunday morning’s avalanche on Mount Trelease is a Clear Creek County resident.

David Heide, 57, of St. Mary’s was snowboarding alone on Mount Trelease, which is north of Interstate 70 near exit 216, when he was caught in an avalanche around 9:30 a.m. Sunday. According to the Colorado Avalanche Information Center, Heide was frequenting an area known as Pat’s Knob, which is at 12,300 feet elevation on the east-facing slope.

After the avalanche was reported, Alpine Rescue Team and other first responders arrived at Mount Trelease and found Heide’s body in the debris field after a two-hour search. He had deployed an avalanche airbag, part of which was visible in the debris field. However, his head had been covered, according to a CAIC press release.

While Heide was an experienced backcountry recreationalist and was wearing the proper equipment, Undersheriff Bruce Snelling commented, “A lot of times, (that equipment) doesn’t prevent what happened today.”

The county coroner’s office took custody of the body and confirmed his identity Sunday afternoon, after next-of-kin had been notified, Snelling confirmed.

Much of the Front Range and Continental Divide is under a high avalanche danger right now because of new snowfall and cold weather, Snelling said, and several people have died in avalanches across Colorado over the past few weeks.

Even with the proper equipment, he recommended that people stay out of the backcountry until conditions improve.

“It’s heartbreaking for the communities that have to go through this,” he continued.

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