Backcountry Skier Killed in Avalanche

Silverton—A Durango man is the first Colorado avalanche victim of 2018.  According to the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, 27 year old Able Palmer was killed Sunday in a slide near Silverton.  The Colorado Avalanche Information Center says Palmer was skiing south of Red Mountain Pass in an area known as “Sam’s Trees.”   About 20 inches of fresh powder fell in the region, putting a heavy load on top of a weak snowpack.  Avalanches have claimed three lives so far this year in the west–two snowmobilers in Idaho and one in Montana.  State officials say the avalanche danger in most of Colorado’s mountains is rated as considerable.