Experts warn of avalanche dangers after Colorado Springs couple, dog buried

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SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — A man, woman and dog are dead after being buried in an avalanche in Summit County over the weekend.

Authorities discovered the bodies of Dr. Drake Oversen, 35, Hannah Nash, 25, both from Colorado Springs, and their dog Valerie.

From pictures on social media, it’s easy to see just how much they loved the great outdoors.

Oversen was a dentist at Mountain Vista Dental in Colorado Springs. The office’s website says Oversen started his dentistry career serving as a captain in the U.S. Army at Fort Carson.

Nash’s LinkedIn says she was an exercise physiologist with Centura Health.

“It is with a heavy heart that we share that Hannah Nash, an exercise physiologist with Penrose-St. Francis Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation, died Saturday, Jan. 8, in an avalanche in Summit County. This loss is deeply felt by every caregiver in our hospital. Hannah was known for her beautiful smile and the genuine love she showed both her colleagues and her patients. Our sympathies go out to the family, friends and loved ones, and all the caregivers who are grieving this painful loss,” said Centura Health in a statement.

Hunter Mortensen, team leader for the Summit County Search and Rescue Group said, “Whenever we see something like an avalanche in a known highly-recreated area, it’s just troublesome and worrying.”

“In the past few years, we’ve been busier than ever,” Mortensen said. “We get closure one way or another for everyone involved.”

Mortensen and his team were called in when loved ones realized Nash, Oversen and pup Valerie were overdue.

“You take all of the snow from this winter and then a little bit of what the wind transports into that area and that’s what kind of caused the whole recipe for the accident that did happen,” Mortensen said.

To avoid danger, experts say people should check with the Colorado Avalanche Information Center on risk areas before heading out. Exercise personal awareness of the snowy terrain and let loved ones know where you’ll be.

Also, those recreating in the high country should travel in groups. Group members should have beacons, probes and shovels.

“It does not take too much snow to be around your legs or your body [to where] you can’t move,” Mortensen said. “If you are buried, you are at the mercy of those who are with you.”

FOX31 reached out to Mountain Vista Dental. A recorded message on the phone said the office was closed Monday due to an emergency.

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