A look up at the Independence Pass slide. Photo: Tess Weaver

A look up at the Independence Pass slide. Photo: Tess Weaver

Just days after what the Colorado Avalanche Information Center called a “very, very, very large and destructive class 5 avalanche” almost claimed the life of one Aspen native, the town is now mourning the loss of another local.

Adam Dennis, a long-time Aspen resident and photographer, passed away on April 4 at the age of 38. According to local reports, Dennis was caught and buried by an avalanche in Maroon Bowl just outside of Aspen Highlands. In addition to being a respected member of the Aspen community, Dennis was a friend of many on the Powder staff. We will be posting more on his life in the coming days.

On Saturday, local skiers Pat Sewell, Dayla Robinson and Tess Weaver (a Powder senior correspondent) triggered a massive class V slide on a north-facing aspect of Independence Pass. That slide ran 2,000 feet, and carried Sewell for 300 feet. Sewell was partially buried, but managed to dig himself out. The avalanche propagated to the ground on old, rotten layers from early in the season. The crown ranged from 2-10 feet in height. We will be posting more on that incident as well.

The CIAC report on Saturday’s slide is here

For more on Adam Dennis’ incident read this

If you are considering any backcountry travel, please be cautious and consult the Colorado Avalanche Information Center prior to making any decision.

Update: More on the Adam Dennis fatality here: