DENVER – Two snowshoers and their dog were killed in an avalanche near Hoosier Pass south of Breckenridge on Saturday.
According to a preliminary report from the Colorado Avalanche Information Center and details from the Summit County Rescue Group, which was involved in the search and recovery operation, people called rescue officials at 10 a.m. Sunday to report that friends they were to meet with had not shown up. The friends of the snowshoers said the two had gone hiking the day before.
Investigators found the missing people’s vehicle at the parking area atop Hoosier Pass, and Summit County Rescue Group (SCRG) ordered a Flight for Life helicopter to search the area.
The helicopter deployed around 12:30 p.m. Sunday, and by 1 p.m., SCRG and Colorado Rapid Avalanche Deployment team members were on their way along with an avalanche dog team.
According to SCRG, search crews though they saw snowshoe tracks near an avalanche on North Star Mountain.
The avalanche dogs – another team was brought in along with the first – found the victims around 2 p.m. According to the CAIC, the two people and the dog were completely buried in the avalanche and were deceased at the scene.
On Monday, the Summit County Office of the Coroner identified the snowshoers as Hannah Nash, 25, and Drake Oversen, 35, both from Colorado Springs. Their dog, Valerie, was also killed in the avalanche.
The avalanche broke about a mile north of Hoosier Pass at about 11,700 feet. The CAIC said it was about 400 feet wide and ran 250 vertical feet, breaking into old snow layers. The crown of the slide was about 3 meters tall, according to SCRG.
Thirty-three SCRG crew members were involved in the search along with two members of the Summit County Sheriff’s Office.
The CAIC is expected to visit the avalanche site Monday and post a full report on it later this week. Both the CAAIC and SCRG sent their condolences to the family and friends of the victims.
According to a Facebook post from Mountain Vista Dental in Colorado Springs, Overseen was a dentist at the office. He started his career as a dentist at Fort Carson.
“This loss is deeply felt by our staff here at Mountain Vista Dental and he will be greatly missed. Our sympathies go out to family, friends and his many patients. We will all miss him more than words can express. He was not just our co-worker but our good friend as well,” the dental office posted.
Overseen was a member of the American Dental Association, the Colorado Dental Association, the Colorado Springs Dental Society and the Seattle Study Club of Southern Colorado.
He was raised in Indiana and attended Indiana University in Bloomington before attending the Indiana University School of Dentistry.
This is the second deadly avalanche in Colorado so far this season. On Christmas Eve, a skier was caught in an avalanche and killed near Cameron Pass.