More details are coming to light following this past weekend’s avalanche fatality near Park City Ski Resort. The snowboarder has been identified by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office as 45-year-old Raymond ‘Matt’ Tauszik of Salt Lake City, UT. According to Greg Gagne, a forecaster with the Utah Avalanche Center (UAC), Tauszik was alone and not wearing any avalanche gear at the time of the accident.
On Sunday, Tauszik left Canyons Village of Park City through a backcountry exit gate at the top of the 9,990-feet lift to Dutch Draw. Downslope of the gate, Tauszik triggered the 3-foot-deep and 100-feet-wide slide, according to UAC.
Image Credit: KSL Heli
Another group of snowboarders spotted his snowboard, realized it was attached to a person, and began digging. It is believed that Tauszik was buried between 25 and 45 minutes before being excavated from the debris.
If you are heading into the backcountry this season make sure you have your avalanche rescue gear (beacon, shovel, probe), know how to use it and always ski or ride with a partner.
Our deepest condolences to Matt’s family and friends.