Snowboarder killed in Mount St. Helens avalanche

MOUNT ST. HELENS, Wash. — A snowboarder was killed in an avalanche on Mount Saint Helens on Saturday, there hasn’t been a fatal avalanche on the mountain since 2010.

The 42-year-old Washougal man had summited the peak and triggered a cornice fall.

The Skamania County Sheriff’s Office tells us the man was alone, but he had climbed the mountain dozens of times before.

A separate climbing group saw his equipment and then spotted his body.

The last fatal avalanche on Mount Saint Helens in 2010 was also a cornice fall. A climber was killed.

A cornice is a mass of hardened overhanging snow at the edge of a rock face.

“A cornice is like a wave of snow... these waves of snow often form along exposed ridgelines and sharp features of the mountain,” said Dallas Glass, Deputy Director of the Northwest Avalanche Center.

Glass added, “You can be standing on one and not realize you’re standing over air.”