GRAND COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – The avalanche danger in the backcountry is currently considerable and a snowboarder was nearly caught in an avalanche on Berthoud Pass on Saturday.
It was a close call for the woman who managed to avoid the slide by getting to a ledge just in time.
There were two avalanches in the high country Saturday. The first happened about 2 p.m. along Berthoud Pass in Grand County where the snowboarder narrowly escaped. The second avalanche happened in the Cameron Pass area in Larimer County. It was triggered by three backcountry skiers. There were no injuries in that slide.
The woman who escaped the Berthoud Pass slide is in her 40s. She was possibly snowboarding by herself when she triggered the small slide. She managed to get to a ledge where she was later spotted by a passerby who called for help.
Another man, George Dirth, was able to get as close as 50 feet away from the woman and talk to her while rescue crews worked to reach her.
“I saw her perched about halfway up the cliff, just kind of hanging on there,” Dirth said. “It’s really fortunate she didn’t get dragged the rest of the way through it. I talked to her, made sure there wasn’t anybody else there and came back and called 911.”
Grand County rescue personnel were able to reach the woman about two hours later and walked her up to the top of the hill to safety. Crews had to take their time getting to the woman because they didn’t want to trigger a secondary slide. The was taken back down by snowmobile on a safe route.
The woman was checked out by medical staff as a precaution.