Backcountry Snowboarder Triggered and Carried by Avalanche Near Crested Butte, CO

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avalanche, colorado
Looking up at an avalanche that caught and carried a snowboarder on Snodgrass Mountain. Credit: CAIC

On December 15, a backcountry snowboarder triggered and was caught in an avalanche on Snodgrass Mountain, north of Crested Butte, CO.

The boarder was swept into a tree and injured. The party called 911 and was assisted out of the field by organized rescuers.

avalanche, colorado
An avalanche triggered by a snowboarder on Snodgrass Mountain, CO. Credit: CAIC

See preliminary report below:

Avalanche Details

  • Location: Snodgrass Mountain,
  • State: Colorado
  • Date: 2020/12/15
  • Time: 2:15 PM (Estimated)
  • Summary Description: One snowboarder caught and injured
  • Primary Activity: Backcountry Tourer
  • Primary Travel Mode: Snowboard


  • Caught: 1
  • Fully Buried: 0
  • Injured: 0
  • Killed: 0


  • Type: SS
  • Trigger: AR – SnowboarderTrigger (subcode): u – An unintentional release
  • Size – Relative to Path: R2
  • Size – Destructive Force: D1.5
  • Sliding Surface: O – Within Old Snow


  • Slope Aspect: NE
  • Site Elevation: 10000 ft
  • Slope Angle: —
  • Slope Characteristic: Planar Slope

Accident Summary

A skier and splitboarder skinned up the southern side of Snodgrass Mountain. They descended the north side, near an area called First Bowl. At around 10,000’, the splitboarder was caught in a slab avalanche. The avalanche carried the boarder into a tree, injuring his leg. The party was able to call 911 and was assisted out of the field by organized rescuers.

snodgrass mountain, colorado, crested butte
Snodgrass Mountain, CO

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