Nick Roberts, Calgary Fire Department member, killed in avalanche while snowmobiling in B.C.

The snowmobiler killed in an avalanche near Golden, B.C., on Saturday has been identified as Nick Roberts, a member of the Calgary Fire Department.

30-year-old apparatus technician identified as victim of Saturday's fatal slide west of Golden

Golden and District Search and Rescue, who responded to a Size 3 avalanche in the East Quartz Creek on Saturday that killed Calgary resident Nick Roberts, took this photo of the slide aftermath. (Golden and District Search and Rescue/Facebook)

The snowmobiler killed in an avalanche near Golden, B.C., on Saturday has been identified as Nick Roberts, a member of the Calgary Fire Department.

The 30-year-old worked as an apparatus technician, according to fire department spokeswoman Carol Henke.

"We in the Calgary Fire Department are very saddened by the sudden loss of our colleague," she said in a statement.

"He was a very valued member of our fire department family since joining our organization in 2013.  We offer our sincere condolences to his family and friends."

Roberts was killed by an avalanche while snowmobiling in the East Quartz Creek area on Saturday. The slide also seriously injured another rider, a 40-year-old man from Winnipeg.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi described Roberts as a dedicated member of the fire department and began Monday's council meeting with a recognition of his service.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Nick and his family," Nenshi said, prior to observing a moment of silence.

Two other snowmobilers in the same group as Roberts were uninjured by the avalanche, according to police.

2nd slide injures Albertans

The next day another avalanche struck a group of more than a dozen skiers on Esplanade Mountain, also just west of Golden.

That slide critically injured a 64-year-old man from Canmore, who was flown to hospital in Calgary.

A 58-year-old woman from Calgary was flown to hospital in Kamloops with serious but non-life-threatening injuries.

Four other skiers were treated in Golden for less serious wounds.

The group was on a "self-guided" ski tour, said Golden Alpine Holidays owner John Bell —  a company that operates four backcountry lodges in the area.

Avalanche Canada issued a special warning on Friday for weekend backcountry users in B.C.'s central and southern interior ranges, saying recent new storms and wind loading had deposited up to a metre of snow on top of a persistent weak layer in the snowpack.

A self-guided group triggered an avalanche in the Esplanade mountain range north of Golden B.C. Feb. 21. (Golden and District Search and Rescue)


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