Snowboarder Steven Anderson Dies in Donner Ski Ranch Slide, Tahoe

Posted By: The Ski Channel on December 25, 2012 12:02 pm

A 49-year-old snowboarder identified as Steven Mark Anderson of the Hirschdale community outside of Truckee was reported missing on Monday, sadly found in a Donner Ski Ranch slide 90 miles northeast of Sacramento after closing the mountain resort for an emergency search. Anderson was reported missing by his brother three hours after an avalanche buried the man in the Sierra Mountains of California, one of many avalanche-related accidents after the recent dump of over 3 feet of powder in the area.

Donner Ski Ranch was closed as rescue teams began the search. Deputy David Lade of the Nevada County Sheriff's Department said it took hours for Anderson's family to

determine he was missing, since they had not been snowboarding as a group and split off early morning. It was Anderson's first day on the hill for the winter season.

“They spent a lot of time trying to locate him,” Lade said. 

A search dog found the man's body about 1:30 p.m. under 2 to 3 feet of snow at the base of the avalanche, reported ABC. The wind had blown snow to depths to 7 feet or more where the man was snowboarding, which was inside the ski area's boundaries near the main lodge.

“With the extremely heavy snowfall we've gotten over the last three days and the conditions prior to that, it's prime avalanche conditions,” Lade said.

The tragedy is one of many avalanche-related emergencies in the Tahoe area after the heavy storm of new snow.