Snowboard Deaths


Lauren Traub Teton is a snowboard safety advocate, and has written about ways for snowboarders, especially beginners to reduce snowboard injuries. Deaths from snowboarding are a shocking reality too, and this site has kept track of them by Google Alerts since 2004.

Sorry Dudes, if this page is a downer.

But it’s important to know that sliding down a mountain fast on a slippery board with knife sharp edges is no joke for the rider or the people around him/her.

Add in the fact that some riders are out of control because they never learned their basic snowboarding skills, like steering and stopping. Throw in the obstacles of trees. Mix in bad judgment, peer pressure, avalanches and it can be a deadly mix. If you don’t believe it, just look at the number of snowboarding deaths reported by Google since December 29, 2004. It’s truly shocking and very scary.

I asked Jeremy Jones, Big Mountain rider for Rossingnol, if anything can be done to prevent deadly avalanche accidents. Jeremy rides jaw dropping cliffs, and does it only well prepared and when the conditions are suitable, testing the snow and choosing his line carefully. Read his answer here

Snowboard Deaths
(Some links may have expired.)

Headlines courtesy of Google Alerts

Snowboard Deaths and Serious Mishaps 2012/2013 Season

December 25, 2012
Snowboarder dies in avalanche at Tahoe-area resort
The Associated Press
(AP) — A 49-year-old California man died Monday after being buried in an avalanche while snowboarding at a Sierra ski resort, one of several


See the list of snowboard deaths from Jan. 2009 to March 2011 on our blog at

Snowboard Deaths and Serious Mishaps 2007/2008 Season

Jan. 13, 2008
Three Students On Snowboarding Trip Killed After Crash – Denver,CO,USA
All four people in the Isuzu were students at Washington State University, heading to Schweitzer Mountain Resort for a snowboarding trip.
See all stories on this topic


Jan. 12, 2008

Missing Snowboarders Michael George and Kyle Kerschen, Search
By Administrator
(AP) — The Wolf Creek Ski Patrol and at least one helicopter resumed the search Friday for two snowboarders missing for nearly a week in the southwest Colorado mountains. A third person was reported missing after an avalanche in
Scared Monkeys Missing Persons Site –


January 11, 2008 at 5:14 AM EST

Hundreds honour snowboarder

Avalanche victim remembered as a high-spirited, card-playing joker who was excited to be visiting Canada

From Friday’s Globe and Mail
BIG WHITE, B.C. — The memorial service for Australian snowboarder Leigh Barnier was packed to overflowing last night, with 250 friends and colleagues from the Big White ski resort in the Okanagan joining Mr. Barnier’s father, uncle and aunt to remember him.

Jan. 7
Worcester man dies in Colo. avalanche
Boston Globe – United States
On his snowboard, Jesse Brigham of Worcester loved to tear down snow-capped mountains with dizzying speed. “He was very adventurous,” his sister, Allison,
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Man dies of injuries from avalanche near Cameron Pass – Grand Junction,CO,USA
Thirty-1-year-old Luke Oldenburg of Fort Collins was snowboarding December 2nd with two friends when he was buried beneath 6 feet of snow.
See all stories on this topic
Still no sign of missing snowboarders
Seattle Post Intelligencer – USA
Sometimes the gray-haired father would look in the direction of Crystal Mountain, where 27-year-old Kevin Carter and his two friends went snowboarding over
See all stories on this topic
Snowboarder who was killed called a ‘joy to be around’
Nevada Appeal – Carson City,NV,USA
On his myspace page, he wrote, “I love to snowboard that is why I live in beautiful Lake Tahoe.” “He was moving away and growing up,” Daniel Moore said,
See all stories on this topic Ryan Donald Moore, the 19-year-old Stateline man who died Wednesday after falling from a chairlift at Heavenly Mountain Resort, was remembered by friends and family Thursday as a well-liked, avid snowboarder.

Snowboard Deaths and Serious Mishaps 2006/2007 Season

3/21/07 A SCOT has plunged to her death while snowboarding with her boyfriend.
Glasgow Daily Record – Glasgow,Scotland,UK
Her partner, Lars Vanhaelewyck, could only look on as she disappeared after pausing to admire the view on a glacier. Lars, a Belgian, said: “She stopped in
See all stories on this topic

1/29/07 Man dies of injuries suffered in snowboarding crash
BOZEMAN, Mont. – A snowboarder who crashed into trees at Moonlight Basin ski resort near here has died of his injuries, authorities say. Edgar Dickson, 26, of Big Sky, was snowboarding alone on Saturday when witnesses said he went off a trail and collided with one or more trees.

9/21/06 Boy who died in sand hill was practicing snowboarding
WBAY – Green Bay, WI, USA
The Waupaca County Sheriff’s Department says the 12-year-old boy who died in a sand pit was practicing snowboarding when he became trapped in the large sand …

Snowboard Deaths and Serious Mishaps 2005/2006 Season

4/19/06 Happy End to this Story

Missing snowboarder turns up safe
National Globe and Mail – Canada
… A few hours earlier, they had put their search on hold, following the discovery of tracks leading to the edge of a steep cliff and a snowboard abandoned on a …

Brazilian snowboarder found alive on Grouse Mountain
CBC British Columbia – Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
A Brazilian exchange student, who went missing amid freezing conditions while snowboarding on North Vancouver’s Grouse Mountain, has been rescued. …

April 7, 2006 Mammoth Lakes Mourns the Deaths of 3 Ski Patrol Members
By Steve Hymon and Amanda Covarrubias, Times Staff Writers
Two men fall into a volcanic vent while fencing it off. A rescuer also is killed and seven are hurt. Resort’s death toll this year hits eight.,0,2392633.story?coll=la-home-headlines

4/5/06 Snowboard instructor dies in avalanche
United Press International – USA
SANDY, Utah, April 4 (UPI) — A snowboard instructor from Chile was carried away by an avalanche he triggered at a Utah ski resort and suffocated under the snow …

4/5/06 Chilean was well-known in snowboard community – Santiago rite bids farewell to man killed in Utah avalanche
By Pat Reavy – Deseret Morning News
A goodbye ceremony was scheduled for Tuesday night at a Catholic church in Santiago, Chile, for the snowboarder killed Monday in a fall and avalanche near Brighton Ski Resort.,1249,635197109,00.html

A Rochester woman died Thursday morning while snow boarding at a ski resort near Lake Tahoe, California. 
Authorities say Elizabeth Knapp, 42, collided with a tree on a black diamond run.  Knapp was with family members when the accident happened.  It¹s the third death at the Northstar-at-Tahoe Ski Resort this year and the second this week.

A Cumbrian woman killed in an avalanche
News & Star – Carlisle, Cumbria, UK
Tragic: Lorraine Dixon was with her partner, her brother and another friend in the French resort of Peisey-Nancroix near Tignes, which is world-renowned for snowboarding. William, 33, who works for Nexia Solutions at Sellafield, was snowboarding with Lorraine when the avalanche happened.

Snowboarder’s body found

The Salt Lake Tribune – Salt Lake, UT, USA
37 year old Ryan Smedley died in a ‘spur-of-the- moment’ backcountry run Saturday after triggering an avalanche. Two feet of new snow had recently fallen.

Teen killed in snowboard accident on Jiminy Peak
Capital News 9 – Albany, NY, USA
The 15-year-old snowboard instructor who died at Jiminy Peak in the Berkshires has been identified as the Lanesborough police chief’s son. … “Alexander Bashara, was riding the Upper Slingshot trail. We have no witnesses, and [he] went off into the woods and, unfortunately, died as a result of the injuries.”

Swedish Olympics snowboarder dies during World Cup training run
WILMINGTON, N.Y. (AP)  Swedish snowboarder Jonatan Johansson died Sunday after falling during a snowboardcross run down Whiteface Mountain in the Adirondacks.
The 26-year-old Turin Olympics competitor made a bad landing on one of his jumps during training for an International Ski Federation World Cup competition, according to U.S. Ski and Snowboarding Association spokesman Tom Kelly. Read Full Story

Ski Park instructor dies in snowboard accident
Mount Shasta Herald – Mt. Shasta, CA, USA
He had been snowboarding on his day off. It was the first ski or snowboard-related fatality in the Park’s 20 year history. Mount … He was found upside down in a tree well.

 March 3, 2006 A 45-year-old snowboarder died on Thursday afternoon at Northstar-at-Tahoe after apparently colliding with a tree.
Tahoe World – Tahoe City, CA, USA
The man was wearing a helmet, according to Nicole Klay, spokeswoman for the resort.

(Dear Lauren,
This was a friend of a friend…I think the article got it wrong as my friend told me he was celebrating his 40th birthday with a day of skiing at Northstar when this happened.  He left behind his wife and young daughter.
Lisa Sparks, NV)

2/28/06 Man dies after snowboarding accident at Squaw Valley
Tahoe World – Tahoe City, CA, USA
Details are still unclear about Thomas Reyneri, who suffered serious injuries as a result of an apparent fall into a drainage ditch below the Headwall chairlift …

2/21/06 Snowboarding accident victim identified
KTVQ-TV – Billings, MT, USA
KALISPELL Authorities have identified the 14-year-old Lakeside girl killed in yesterday’s snowboarding accident at Blacktail Mountain Ski Area.

“In this unfortunate accident, the skier was killed.”

2/19/06 – Man dies after collision on ski slope
Boston Globe, United States –
LUDLOW, Vt. –A 79-year-old Putney man skiing at Okemo Mountain was killed after colliding with a snowboard instructor, police said. Everett …

Death reported at Alpine Meadows
Tahoe Daily Tribune – South Lake Tahoe,CA,USA
Jessica Gregorie was hiking up an embankment to a ski and snowboard location when she fell down an embankment at about 11:25 am, said Vernon McCarty, coroner  


Dear Lauren,
Our dear friend just died 2-18-06 at Caberfae resort in Michigan. Very tragic. We were told he hit a tree. Lived in a coma for 1 week then died. The worst thing to happen around here.

His name was John Vincent Mitchell, 18, U of MI student, summa cum laude., athletic and smart. Our Livonia, Mi community is devastated. Please pray for him. He was my daughters friend and her friend’s boyfriend for years…sad…

Please encourage helmets, and tell your readers to quit when they are tired and not to take chances…

Thank you,
Theresa B.

(Skiers can die too.)

2/6/06 – Deaths of 5 Skiers Stun Mammoth
In the span of a week, three skiing accidents, a heart attack and an avalanche claimed the lives of four visitors and a ski patrol veteran.,0,3192859.story?coll=la-home-headlines

Police unsure if snowboarder slept in snow cave
The News-Review – Roseburg,OR,USA
Authorities in Central Oregon have been unable to determine whether a Myrtle Creek man who was killed early Friday at Mt. Bachelor may have been sleeping inside a snow cave. Cameron J. Sharp, 18, died after being struck by a snow removal machine operating in the West Village parking lot at the resort outside Bend.
Sharp, who had been snowboarding for more than 10 years, had extensive snow camping experience. Relatives and friends believe it unlikely he placed his sleeping bag on the open ground. They believe he may have dug snow out from a mound and climbed inside to sleep.

Friends, family mourn 12-year-old killed in snowboarding accident
WLNS – Lansing,MI – USA
Hundreds of mourners have gathered at an Oakland County ski resort to remember a 12-year-old boy who died in a snowboarding accident. The resort manager says Tony Sisco’s death might have been prevented if he had worn a helmet. The White Lake Township boy was found lying motionless in the snow at Alpine Valley Ski Resort near his home last week. He was taken off life support on Thursday.

Snowboard dies at Alpental
Seattle Post Intelligencer – USA
SNOQUALMIE PASS, Wash. — A snowboarder has died from an accident on a closed run at the Alpental ski area, officials said. The


Snowboard Deaths and Serious Mishaps 2004/2005 Season

I am the wife of a snowboarder that died in January at Solitude. His name was Rusty Towns and He was 32 years old. He was riding the Cathedral Cliffs area of Solitude and fell about 150 feet off of a trail. His accident happened on January 6th 2005 and he lived for 8 days and died on January 14th. He loved the sport and so do I and I think you guys are doing a great job of getting the word out that our sport is dangerous no matter how old or how good you are. Helmets…Helmets! Please! Keep up the awesome work! Lots of luck! Beth, Orlando, FL

Not Death, Just a Close Call
Backcountry Snowboarder Rescued From AvalancheUS/Mountain FRISCO, Colo. (AP) Rescuers spent at least five hours Wednesday extracting a snowboarder who was partially buried by an avalanche on Buffalo Mountain, a popular backcountry spot for snowriders.
Two snowboarders triggered the slide in an avalanche chute about 1 p.m., Denver television stations reported.
“The main shoot here is 3,000 vertical feet, it’s considered one of the classics of Colorado,” said Mike Zobbe, with the Summit County Avalanche Office. “It’s great to ski and snowboard but also needs to be treated with great respect.”
The snowboarder sustained a number of injuries. He was taken off the mountain about 6 p.m.

Snowboarding victim identified as Texas teen Fort Worth Star Telegram – Fort Worth, TX, USA
Ewalt was snowboarding with friends when he crashed Tuesday morning, the Grand County coroner’s office said. Officials said Ewalt was not wearing a helmet.

Not Death, Just a Close Call
Snowboarders spend freezing night in a snow cave
Australians rescued from snow cave ABC Online – Australia
Four Australians, who were snowboarding in Austria, have been rescued after having to spend the night in a snow cave due to bad weather.

3/6/05 Benzie County, Indiana
Snowboarding Fatal Accident
An Indiana man is dead after a snowboarding accident at a northern Michigan resort. It happened Saturday night at Crystal Mountain in Benzie county. It’s the first reported fatality in the resort’s 49 years of operation. The 21 year old man was snowboarding and attempted one of the terrain’s jumps, lost control and hit the ground. He was not wearing a helmet at the time. To avoid accidents like this, Crystal mountain’s President suggests you inspect the terrain ahead of time to know what’s out there. Crystal Mountain also has warning signs posted that serious injury or death are possible and helmets are recommended. Benzie county officials say the accident is still under investigation.

Shrewsbury woman dies, teen charged in snowboard crash Boston Herald – USA
Police said the crash Thursday broke the snowboard in two. The snowboarder suffered minor injuries, and Donahue lost consciousness.

And over in Europe: – Ireland
TWO Czechs and a Hungarian died in separate accidents in the Slovakian Tatra mountains over the weekend. One Czech snowboarder died  

Snowboarder dies at Red River Ski Area KFOR-TV – Oklahoma City, OK, USA
RED RIVER, NM — Authorities say a 30-year-old Oklahoma man is dead after apparently hitting a tree while snowboarding at the Red River Ski Area in New Mexico. …

Teenager Dies in Snowboarding Accident KIFI – Idaho Falls, ID, USA
A 14-year-old from Salmon was killed in a snowboarding accident at Jackson Hole mountain resort. It happened Saturday at about 10:00 in the morning. …
See all stories on this topic

Russian tourist dies in avalanche  Turks.US – USA
The man, whose name has not been released, was killed when he was buried in the avalanche while snowboarding at the Palandoken resort in the eastern Turkish

UVa student dies in Wintergreen snowboarding accident
Charlottesville Daily Progress – Charlottesville,VA,USA
WINTERGREEN–A University of Virginia student died in a snowboarding accident at Wintergreen Tuesday afternoon, resort officials have said.

Avalanches kill at least four in Austrian Alps…Boston Globe – Boston, MA, USA
killed at least four people, including a 31-year-old American, and seriously injured about 10 others who strayed off-trail for skiing and snowboarding in the

Two Canadians confirmed dead, 1 injured in avalanches in Austria’s CBC News – Canada
Experts regularly warn that skiing or snowboarding off-piste in unstable snow can be dangerous and triggers many of the hundreds of slides that annually claim

Two Gonzaga students die in Idaho avalanche, one survives
WALLACE, Idaho — Two snowboarders from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash., were killed in an avalanche while snowboarding south of Mullan, Idaho, the  

Man found frozen on snowboard outing  Seattle Post Intelligencer – Seattle, WA
After lunch, the man continued to snowboard by himself and advised his friends he was going to the peak…

One man identified as crews restart search for avalanche victims
Wyoming News, WY – 25 minutes ago
buried were in an out-of-bounds area near The Canyons resort that heavy snow across the Wasatch mountain range that prompted extreme avalanche warnings across
Five feared dead after avalanche Columbia Daily Tribune
Search continues for 5 missing in Utah avalanche Houston Chronicle
Five skiers feared dead in avalanche Washington Times

Snowboarder killed in avalanche  Vancouver Sun – Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
NAKUSP, BC — A Revelstoke man has died after being buried in an avalanche while snowboarding in the Trout Lake area near Nakusp.

Safety, respect, and awareness will be in the spotlight at mountains nationwide during National Safety Awareness Week, a Jan. 15-21 initiative sponsored by the ski industry group National Ski Areas Association. Among the offerings at ski areas nationwide will be free ski binding checks, helmet demonstrations, and contests.

Snowboarder dies in accident Vancouver Sun – Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
A 30-year-old man from London, England has been killed in a snowboarding accident at Whistler. The RCMP say Christopher James Walker  

Victim in ski area avalanche identified as Las Vegas teen  KESQ – Palm Desert, CA
LAS VEGAS A 13-year-old killed in an avalanche yesterday (Sunday) at the Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort is being identified as Allen Brett Hutchison of Las

Deadly avalanches in Utah Capital News 9 – Albany, NY
Sheriff’s officials said one man was killed Saturday while snowboarding. Another man died about 15 miles away while riding a snow mobile.

At least five people have been killed in avalanches in Utah this winter.

Two die in Utah avalanches Wyoming News – WY
Garrett Louk Gordon, 26, of Ephraim, was snowboarding in Ephraim Canyon around 1 pm Saturday when he was buried. Gordon was wearing  

College student dies in snowboarding accident  Newsday – Long Island, NY
TRUMBULL, Conn. — An 18-year-old student at Southern Connecticut State University has died after a snowboarding accident at a Massachusetts ski area.

Harbor High senior dies snowboarding in Tahoe Harbor  Santa Cruz Sentinel – Santa Cruz, CA
For three hours Saturday morning, father and son Rob and Brendon Stuart celebrated the new year by snowboarding between the trees on the back side of Northstar  

Man dies after accident on Vail Mountain Vail Daily News – Vail, CO
VAIL – A 26-year-old Venezuelan man who hit a tree while snowboarding on Vail Mountain died Friday. Francisco Pauly-Brillembourg  

Death on the Slopes  KKTV 11 News – Colorado Springs, CO
Reports say the snowboarder died of internal injuries. A 12 year-old Texas boy died in another snowboarding accident in Winter Park.  Another person has died on the slopes in the state. A 42 year-old snowboarder died at the Breckenridge ski area Friday after hitting a tree, marking the third time this season a skier or snowboarder died at a Colorado resort.  Reports say the snowboarder died of internal injuries.

A 12 year-old Texas boy died in another snowboarding accident in Winter Park. And a 13 year-old ski racer died December 19th when she was hit by a snowmobile in Vail.

Snowboarder, 42, dies after hitting tree at Breckenridge  Denver Post – Denver, CO
Breckenridge – A 42-year-old Colorado man died Friday morning after crashing into a tree while snowboarding at Breckenridge ski area. The man was wearing a helmet as he went down Cashier, an intermediate trail, according to a news release from the resort. He hit the tree about 8:40 a.m.

The resort’s ski patrol responded, provided advanced life support and took the man to Breckenridge Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The victim was Curt William Hubbell of Castle Rock, according to the Associated Press.

Summit County Deputy Coroner Richard Eaton told the Associated Press that Hubbell appears to have died of internal injuries. An autopsy was scheduled for early this week.

Hubbell’s death is the third this season caused by injuries suffered at Colorado ski resorts.

Alexander Jensen, 12, of Wylie, Texas, died Tuesday at The Children’s Hospital in Denver after hitting a tree while snowboarding at Winter Park the previous day. Grand County officials said he wasn’t wearing a helmet.

Ashley Stamp, 13, of Steamboat Springs died Dec. 19 at Vail when she collided with a snowmobile.

In another ski-resort death, Michael Combs of Calabasas, Calif., the 42-year-old boyfriend of Clint Eastwood’s daughter, died Dec. 13 of a seizure disorder while snowboarding at Vail.

Texas boy dies after snowboarding accident  KLTV – Tyler, TX
WINTER PARK, Colo. A 12-year-old Dallas-area boy has died from his injuries after hitting a tree while snowboarding at Winter Park, Colorado.

Carson Middle School girl dies in snowboarding accident  San Francisco Chronicle – San Francisco, CA
A 13-year-old Carson City girl was killed when she slammed into a tree while snowboarding at Heavenly Mountain Resort, The El Dorado County Sheriff’s

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