Scott Kay, Wolf Creek Ski Patrol director, died in an avalanche early today.
The ski area reported thirteen inches of new snow this morning and eighteen inches in the last 48 hours.
Here's the first official statement we've received from the ski area:
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On Monday, November 22, 2010 at 7:45 a.m. our Wolf Creek Ski Patrol Director, while working to protect others, was caught in an avalanche which, to our great sadness, he did not survive. Wolf Creek's management and all its employees wish to express our deepest regrets at this loss of a wonderful man and close friend. Our sympathy and condolences go out to his wife and two children.
To honor him, Wolf Creek will remain closed for the remainder of Monday, November 22, 2010 and, also to honor him, will reopen on Tuesday, November 23, 2010 at 8:30 a.m.
Kay was a member of the American Avalanche Association, an organization that offers online avalanche safety tutorials and provides resources for avalanche education in Colorado. By coincidence, the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) is hosting a free "Beyond the Basics" avalanche terrain workshop tomorrow night at the REI Denver Flagship store: If you're heading into the backcountry this season or even planning on some big powder days in-bounds, take care to prepare as much as you possibly can. For local avalanche forecasts, bookmark the Colorado Avalanche Information Center website.
A memorial fund will be set up on behalf of the Kay family at Saint Patrick's Episcopal Church, 225 South Pagosa Boulevard, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.