Breckenridge Ski Resort investigating avalanche; no injuries reported

BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. -- An avalanche was reported at Breckenridge Ski Resort early Friday afternoon, according to the Summit County Sheriff's office. The slide occurred near the Imperial Express SuperChair, which provides access to expert terrain.

Sgt. Mark Watson with the sheriff's office said the avalanche occurred about 12:30 p.m. north of the Imperial Bowl area of the ski resort.

No one was injured, according to the ski resort. However, the Associated Press reports that a teenager visiting Colorado for spring break says he and two friends were swept up in the avalanche while snowboarding.

Grant Shields, of Asheville, North Carolina, says he was on an expert run called Whale's Tail when he heard a pop and saw a seam open in the snow. The 18-year-old says a wall of snow hit him and his friends, who were able to make swimming motions to stay on top of the slide.

Dave Zohn and his buddies were also skiing and snowboarding on Whale's Tail and saw the snow slide.

"A little bit of slide, not too much snow," he told FOX31.

Zohn said the historic avalanches in Colorado haven't deterred him from enjoying the fresh powder. However, they do show him and others the power of Mother Nature.

"It's surreal," said Andy Bradford. He lives at the base of Peak One in Frisco, where an avalanche cleared a swath of trees this week and stopped just a few hundred yards from his home.

"It’s terrifying," Bradford told FOX31. "We’ve seen a lot of avalanches over the years. Every spring, you can see avalanches coming down Peak One... but to that extent, cutting down that many trees... it would’ve had to be extremely powerful."

The Imperial chairlift is the highest in North America at 12,998 feet. It exclusively serves black, double-black and extreme-terrain runs on Peak 8.

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