Skier dead in avalanche west of Lake Louise

One person is dead after an avalanche west of Lake Louise last week.

Avalanche Canada says a skier went off the shoulder of Cathedral Mountain, onto a slope known as Cathedral Glades, in B.C.’s Yoho National Park and triggered a size 2.5 avalanche.

Based on professional observations made on the morning of Saturday, March 30, Avalanche Canada believes the incident happened the day before.

However, officials say the person, believed to be a man in his 40s, wasn’t reported missing until Monday, April 1.

“The deceased individual was reported to have left on a backcountry trip starting on Thursday and was supposed to come back on Sunday, and then he didn’t return on Sunday, and then the following day, a loved one reported him missing,” Aaron Beardmore with Parks Canada told CityNews.

Avalanche Canada adds the victim was found from the air due to a partially visible ski.

“When rescuers dropped off, they started with a transceiver search, but no signal was found. But, shortly after that, the rescuer noticed a ski boot sticking out of the snow and the individual was located,” Beardmore said.

He adds it was challenging for crews to find the man.

“They didn’t have much to go on, but basically they were just looking for high risk areas, looking for ski tracks intersecting with avalanche deposits, wherever they may be and it’s such a popular area for backcountry skiing that there were tracks everywhere, so it was really hard to tell at times where this individual could be based on that,” Beardmore explained.

Once the rescuers landed, they found the victim partially buried with a boot also visible on the snow surface.

A transceiver was found switched off in the victim’s backpack, according to officials.

There’s no word on where the victim was from.

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