Colorado avalanche kills one snowshoer, two survive

By Keith Coffman DENVER (Reuters) - One snowshoer was killed but two others survived when an avalanche swept down a 12,000-foot Colorado mountain peak on Wednesday, authorities said, marking the third avalanche fatality in the United States this season. The trio was atop Kelso Ridge near the town of Bakerville, about 45 miles west of Denver, when the slide hit at mid-morning, the Clear Creek County Sheriff's Office said in a statement. Police said a female snowshoer was leading the group across a "suspicious area" on the mountain when she turned around and saw that an avalanche had hit, burying one of her two male companions. The woman and the man not caught up in the slide located the buried man, who was equipped with an avalanche beacon, about 20 minutes later. "The female party checked for (a) pulse, while the male party tried CPR, and no signs of life were found," the sheriff's office said. Neither the dead man nor the survivors were named by the authorities. Most of Colorado's high country is under a moderate or considerable avalanche threat, according to the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. Wednesday's death marks the third avalanche fatality in the United States so far this season, the center said. In November, a snowmobiler was killed when a slide hit near Henderson Peak in Montana, and earlier in December a cross-country skier died after being buried by an avalanche in Alaska's Delta Range mountains. (Reporting by Keith Coffman in Denver; Editing by Mohammad Zargham)