Avalanches Kill Four Skiers in Washington

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A group of skiers were swept down a pass in the Cascade Mountains on Sunday, killing three and leaving others buried in the snow before being rescued. The party of 13 friends were all experienced backcountry skiers who ventured outside the boundary to a popular route that funnels into down a narrow pass. Four of the skiers, including professional freeskier Elyse Saugstad, were caught in the worst part of the avalanche and were swept 2,000-to-3,000 feet down the mountain. Saugstad survived by deploying an airbag from her backpack that kept her from being completely buried, but three men that she was with were killed by the slide. The remaining skiers reacted quickly to dig the out those who were buried, but were unable to revive the victims. 

A snowboarder was also killed in a separate incident at another resort in Washington after being swept over a cliff by a different avalanche. Also, on Friday, Prince Johan Friso, the son of Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands was seriously injured in an avalanche while skiing in Austria. He remains in intensive care.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.