Two skiers were buried and killed by an avalanche south of Tatla Lake in central B.C. on Saturday (Feb. 11).
Avalanche Canada says the pair had snowmobiled into the Potato Mountain Range, about 40 kilometres south of Tatla Lake before putting on their skis. They were on the mountain’s east-facing slope when a slab of snow broke off and buried them.
The man and woman were reported missing to RCMP on Monday after they didn’t return from their trip on Sunday as planned. RCMP, a search and rescue team and an avalanche safety officer searched the area and found the pair’s bodies.
The BC Coroners Service is investigating their deaths.
Avalanche Canada says the slope was highly wind-affected with areas of deeply wind-drifted snow and thin and rocky snow cover. The slab that broke off was estimated to be between 40 and 130 centimetres, depending on the area.
The two latest deaths bring the total number of avalanche fatalities in B.C. in 2023 to seven. Two Nelson police officers were killed near Kaslo in early January, followed by a snowmobiler near Valemount and two American brothers near Revelstoke.