Killer Avalanche Claims Three on Leavenworth Peak
Three hikers were buried alive Sunday after a member of their hiking group may have caused an avalanche that sent them hurtling 500 feet. The group were climbing Colchuk peak, Southwest of Leavenworth.
According to Chelan County Emergency Management, a group of six hikers were climbing the peak when around 1pm the lead hiker triggered what would be the first of multiple avalanches.
The first slide swept four of the six hikers back down the couloir that they were climbing, that from Rich Magnusson with Chelan County Emergency Management. Magnusson went on to further describe what happened "One of the four survived the other three were confirmed fatalities. About an hour after the initial slide, three more larger slides came down through the same area and covered the three victims."
Because of the current weathers conditions, attempts to recover the three hikers remains will not happen until things begin to clear on Thursday. A Winter Storm Warning has been in effect in the area and is in effect until Wednesday afternoon.
The group of six hikers are from the East Coast, of the four involved in the avalanche, the hiker that was injured but survived is a 56-year-old man from New York. The deceased hikers, according to the Chelan County Sheriff's Office, were a a 53-year-old man from Connecticut, a 60-year-old woman from New York, and a 66-year-old man from New Jersey. The two other hikers from the group were able to stay clear of the slide.
The names of the victims have not been released pending identification of the next of kin.
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