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1/14/2020
Snowboarders survive avalanche: In Chugach National Forest

ANCHORAGE (AP) — A trio of backcountry snowboarders were able to safely escape after being caught in an avalanche in Alaska's Chugach National Forest, authorities said.

The snowboarders were hiking up a trail when they triggered the avalanche Saturday, The Anchorage Daily News reported.

The "near miss" avalanche fully buried one person and partially buried another, the Chugach National Forest Avalanche Information Center said.

The person who was fully buried suffered minor injuries while the other two were not hurt. The group freed themselves and hiked out to the Crow Creek trailhead, the center said.

The group was on a 40-degree slope between the historic mine ruins and the public-use Crow Pass cabin when the avalanche occurred, according to the center's preliminary report.

The hard slab avalanche was about 50 feet (15 meters) wide with a vertical run of 500 feet (152 meters). The crown at the top of the slide measured 3 feet (0.91 meters) deep, the center said.

A report posted online by Alaska State Troopers said no one else was in the area at the time.

The U.S. Forest Service, Girdwood Fire Department, Alyeska Ski Patrol and Rescue Coordination Center responded, troopers said.