Missing skier found dead after avalanche in backcountry near Keystone Ski Resort

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. - Search teams have found the body of a missing skier who disappeared in an avalanche in the backcountry, south of Keystone Ski Resort.

The avalanche was reported at about noon Monday, according to the Summit County Sheriff's Office. The avalanche debris field was reportedly around 2,000 feet in length, with depths up to 9 feet.

One man who was caught in the snow slide was able to dig himself out, but he was not able to find his skiing companion.

The skier found dead Tuesday was identified by the Summit County Coroner as 46-year-old Kevin Kuybus, a resident of Highlands Ranch. He was wearing a helmet at the time of the avalanche, but the cause of death was blunt force trauma to the chest.

After the avalanche, the Summit County Rescue Group and other personnel searched for Kuybus until approximately 6 p.m. Monday, when visibility and conditions became too dangerous for further operations, officials said.

Search teams were back in the area Tuesday, after avalanche mitigation was completed and the area was deemed safe.

Roughly 40 search and rescue personnel  from Keystone Ski Resort, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area, Breckenridge Ski Resort, Summit County Rescue Group, Vail Mountain Rescue, Alpine Rescue Team and the U.S. Forest Service assisted in the search. Four dogs were also involved in the search.

According to the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC), the current avalanche danger rating is HIGH. Avalanche conditions are considered very dangerous and travel in avalanche terrain is not recommended.