Advertisement

Skier dies in avalanche on Cathedral Mountain near Lake Louise

A view of the avalanche start zone and upper track on Cathedral Mountain, where a skier died on March 29.  (Avalanche Canada - image credit)
A view of the avalanche start zone and upper track on Cathedral Mountain, where a skier died on March 29. (Avalanche Canada - image credit)

A skier died in an avalanche on Cathedral Mountain just west of Lake Louise, Alta., on Friday, Avalanche Canada says.

In a report posted to its website, the organization said the fatal incident happened when a solo skier skied off the shoulder of the mountain onto a slope known as Cathedral Glades.

In a statement sent to CBC News, Parks Canada said it received a report Monday of an "overdue" solo skier who had been skiing in the Lake Louise area since last Thursday.

The missing person's vehicle was parked at the Lake O'Hara parking lot.

"With limited information of the skier's trip plans, the search was extensive within the Lake O'Hara area," Parks Canada said.

"All ski tracks as well as high-risk areas were investigated."

Avalanche Canada said the victim was first located from the air early Monday evening because a ski was visible.

Once landed, the rescuers found the skier partially buried under the snow with a boot visible on the surface.

The agency noted a transceiver was found in the victim's backpack but it had been turned off.

The location in a black pin shows where the accident happened.
The location in a black pin shows where the accident happened.

The black pin shows where the incident happened, west of the B.C.-Alberta boundary and south of the Trans-Canada Higway. (Avalanche Canada)

Avalanche Canada said the skier had triggered a Size 2.5 avalanche.

Avalanches are rated on a five-point scale by destructive potential, ranging from Size 1, which is relatively harmless, to Size 5, which could destroy a village. A Size 2 avalanche is big enough to bury, injure or kill a person.