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Berthoud Pass Reopened, Search Continues For Snowboarder

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An image of Berthoud Pass after an avalanche (credit: Colorado Department of Transportation)

An image of Berthoud Pass after an avalanche (credit: Colorado Department of Transportation)

HOT SULPHUR SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4/AP) – Search and rescue teams are looking for a snowboarder missing on Berthoud Pass in north-central Colorado.

The Grand County sheriff’s office says Jeffrey Miller, 26, of the Winter Park area went missing Monday when snowboarding with a friend.

The friend said he saw Miller and Miller’s dog behind him after a small snow slide nearby, but didn’t see them a little later. He said he went down the drainage two more times, but couldn’t find Miller.

About 40 people looked for Miller Monday and Tuesday and plan to resume Wednesday.

U.S. 40 over Berthoud Pass was closed most of Monday and Tuesday because of snow and strong winds and the search for the man. Avalanche cleanup work continued on the east side of the pass.

dsc8152 Berthoud Pass Reopened, Search Continues For Snowboarder

(credit: Colorado Department of Transportation)

“It’s a mixture of a lot of history, a lot of art and a lot of science put together to make that call, but when they get nervous, we pay attention,” Tony DeVito with the Colorado Department of Transportation said of closing the pass at avalanche forecasters’ advice.

Avalanche work will progress on the west side following the search and rescue operations. Berthoud Pass was reopened around 5:40 p.m on Tuesday. It had been closed for nearly 30 hours.

CDOT brought down an avalanche Tuesday afternoon they called the “Stanley Slide.”

“The slide was about 20 feet deep and an estimated two hundred yards long,” Stacey Stegman with CDOT said.

Officials say avalanche danger in the high county is close to “extreme.” An avalanche warning remains in effect until at least Wednesday morning. Two feet of snow fell in the mountain on Monday alone. The conditions are so dangerous even the snow in some residents’ driveways is unstable.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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