Snowboarder dies near Telluride after descending Bear Creek backcountry with friends |

Snowboarder dies near Telluride after descending Bear Creek backcountry with friends

Bruce Finley / Denver Post

A 47-year-old snowboarder died Sunday afternoon outside the Telluride ski area in the Bear Creek backcountry below a mine, San Miguel County authorities confirmed Sunday night, Colorado’s second mountain fatality of the day.

The coroner identified the snowboarder as Gabriel Wright, a longtime resident of Telluride, who had been snowboarding with two friends.

“He was the third of three skiing down from the Nellie Mine. When the other two realized he wasn’t there, they went up and reached him,” San Miguel County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Susan Lilly said. The friends found him unresponsive and administered CPR for 30 minutes, Lilly said. They also were able to notify the county’s search-and-rescue crew, who flew into the area by helicopter. But crew members couldn’t revive Wright.

While the friends didn’t see what happened, the condition of Wright’s board indicated he may have hit a rock in shallow snow at high speed, Lilly said. Searchers determined he was thrown forward and hit a log under snow.

“Gabe was a long-time local and avid backcountry snowboarder, and he will be missed,” said Deputy Sheriff Chris White, a member of the search and rescue team.

A skier died Sunday at Keystone Resort in Summit County after he hit a tree.

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