Skier Killed in Avalanche. Companion Alive After Digging Himself Out

Skier Killed in Avalanche. Companion Alive After Digging Himself Out

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Skier Killed in Avalanche. Companion Alive After Digging Himself Out

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Eric Peterson, 35, of Delta Junction, is dead following an avalanche in Alaska’s Rainbow Mountains. Peterson, 35, was skiing with Michael Hopper, 63, owner of the Black Rapids Lodge, at the time of the slide. Hopper was treated at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital after he managed to dig himself out of the snow, locate his friend and flag down help.

“It was reported that (Hopper) had been skiing with a man tentatively identified as (Peterson) when they heard a ‘whoomp’ from the snow about 20 feet above them,” troopers wrote. “Hopper reported it took him 2-3 hours to dig himself out. Once he was free he located Peterson’s glove and dug down and found Peterson deceased.”

In addition to AST, military members from Black Rapids as well as the Fort Greely Fire Department and Rural Delta Fire and Rescue responded to the scene.

“The area Hopper was skiing in is widely unstable and continuing to deteriorate with the additional heavy snowfall,” troopers wrote. “AST will attempt to recover the body when the weather and conditions permit.”

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