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April 29, 2011
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Ski champ Nick DeVore breaks femur in backcountry avalanche near Aspen

ASPEN - Renowned Aspen telemark skier Nick DeVore broke his femur after being caught in a backcountry avalanche Thursday morning, authorities said.DeVore, 25, was to undergo surgery Thursday afternoon at Aspen Valley Hospital, said Pitkin County Sheriff's Deputy Rene Rayton.DeVore was skiing with a four-member party, which had snowmobiled from Aspen Mountain to Richmond Ridge to the Taylor Pass area, Rayton said. DeVore was skiing solo, however, when he got caught in a slide estimated to be 550 to 600 feet long in the M&M Chutes, located on the mountainside above Ashcroft, Rayton said."He ended up being buried up to his shoulders," Rayton said. "He disappeared at one time but when everything came to a rest he was buried to his shoulder."His partners dug him out of the snow, and one had to hike approximately three-quarters of a mile before getting cell service, Rayton said. At approximately 11:50 a.m., authorities received a call about the avalanche, and by 12:25 p.m., a Summit County Flight For Life helicopter was en route to the scene. The helicopter landed on a ridge, about 100 yards from DeVore, and delivered him to the hospital by 2:30 p.m., authorities said. Mountain Rescue Aspen also aided in the effort, staging three two-member teams at the bottom of Express Creek and sending two teams up Express Creek on snowmobiles. DeVore's career highlights include winning the 2008 Telemark Freeskiing World Championship in Alaska, claiming sixth place in the Jackson Hole Freeskiing Open in 2008, placing 11th in the Snowbird Freeskiing Nationals in 2009, climbing and skiing 25 of Colorado's 14,000-feet mountains in 2006, and achieving two first descents down Denali in May 2006, among other feats.In 2009, Skiing Magazine touted DeVore as "the best tele skier in the world."Noted Telemark Skier magazine in October 2007: "He's probably one of the best, if not the best, Telemarker out there today."

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The Aspen Times Updated Apr 29, 2011 03:17AM Published Apr 29, 2011 03:14AM Copyright 2011 The Aspen Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.