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The fatal Maroon Bowl avalanche on Sunday, March 19, 2023. (Colorado Avalanche Information Center)

A 54-year-old man from Budapest, Hungary, was identified Tuesday as the skier killed in a large backcountry avalanche just beyond the Aspen Highlands ski area boundary.

Gábor Házas was skiing in an out-of-bounds area known as the Maroon Bowl, a steep northwest-facing slope, when he was caught in an avalanche about 1:30 p.m. Sunday, the Pitkin County Coroner’s Office said.

Two other backcountry skiers were also caught in the slide, on the backside of the popular Aspen Highlands’ Highland Bowl, but were able to extricate themselves. 

Rescuers with Mountain Rescue Aspen, with help from a flight crew from the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control, recovered Házas’ body and brought it to the coroner’s office for an autopsy.

The avalanche broke about 200 feet wide and ran about 2,000 vertical feet, the Colorado Avalanche Information Center said in its initial report on the slide. 

Házas is the ninth person to die from an avalanche in Colorado’s backcountry this year. In the 2021-2022 winter season, seven people were killed.

Olivia Prentzel covers breaking news and a wide range of other important issues impacting Coloradans for The Colorado Sun, where she has been a staff writer since 2021. At The Sun, she has covered wildfires, criminal justice, the environment,...