One Dead in Aspen Backcountry Avalanche

It's Colorado's third avalanche fatality this season.
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It's Colorado's third avalanche fatality this season.
Aspen Mountain (photo/Wikipedia)

Aspen Mountain (photo/Wikipedia)

A backcountry avalanche took the life of a skier near Aspen, Colorado on Monday. Per 9NEWS, the man has been identified as 64-year-old John Martin Gancsos. Gancsos was skiing in the Castle Creek Valley just outside of the Aspen Mountain Ski Resort when he triggered the avalanche.

Gancsos's body was recovered by ski patrol crews early Tuesday morning, marking Colorado's third avalanche-related fatality of the 2014-2015 winter season.

New snowfall reached two feet in some areas of the state this week thanks to a massive winter storm, prompting the Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) to raise its avalanche danger warning to "considerable."

When new snow falls on top of packed-down old snow, it creates a "sugar-like" snowpack that does not bond together well, increasing the risk of slab slides. The CAIC is discouraging backcountry travel at this point because of the high danger.

Another storm is expected to hit the Rocky Mountains this weekend, bringing snow totals up to 4 feet in some areas.

Read more: 9NEWS