Crews search for missing snowboarder at Mt. Baker

MOUNT BAKER, Wash. (AP) — Authorities say crews were searching Monday for a Bellingham man who was last seen going under a rope line at Mt. Baker Ski Area.

The Bellingham Herald reports that friends of 24-year-old Bellingham resident Vitaliy Datskiy reported him missing Sunday afternoon when he failed to return to a designated meeting point near a chairlift.

Ski area president and general manager Duncan Howat says ski patrollers did an immediate search which was followed by about two dozen volunteers and members of the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office search and rescue team searching the area until after dark in heavy snow and high winds.

More than 50 inches of snow fell in the area since Friday and snow continued Monday. The Northwest Avalanche Center rated avalanche danger high in the North Cascades.

Datskiy is the third snowboarder to disappear this winter season.