Snowboarder dies in avalanche near Haines

View of the Chilkat River from the Takshanuk Mountains.
View of the Chilkat River from the Takshanuk Mountains. (Creative Commons photo by Jonathan.s.kt)

A snowboarder died Wednesday after being buried under an avalanche outside Haines.

In a press release, Alaska State Troopers say that David Dzenawagis, a Haines resident, was snowboarding above the Takshanuk Mountain Trail when an avalanche was triggered.

The release says two skiers in the area were able to dig Dzenawagis out of the snow within a matter of minutes. The skiers, both from Haines, attempted to resuscitate Dzenawagis before emergency personnel arrived. When Haines Fire Department EMS personnel reached the scene via helicopter, they pronounced Dzenawagis dead.

A forecast issued Thursday by the Alaska Avalanche Information Center ranks the risk for avalanches around Haines from “considerable” to “high,” depending on elevation. Because of a pileup of wet, heavy, windswept snow in recent days, AAIC recommends avoiding “all avalanche terrain” on Thursday.

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