Skier dead following tree strike incident at Arizona Snowbowl: CCSO

Officials with the Coconino County Sheriff's Office say an investigation is underway following a deadly incident at Arizona Snowbowl.

According to a statement, CCSO responded to the ski resort at around 10:56 a.m. on Jan. 22, following a report of a tree strike incident that left a person seriously injured. By the time deputies arrived at the scene, the skier was already declared dead.

CCSO identified the victim as a 22-year-old man from Tempe.

"According to information collected by deputies, the skier was initially skiing on ‘Upper Ridge’ run, which is labeled with a ‘black diamond’ or ‘most difficult’ terrain rating," read a portion of the statement. "The skier is believed to have skied just outside a boundary line and struck a tree. Witnesses stated shortly after he got off the lift the subject was skiing down the run when he lost control went out of bounds striking a tree about 15 feet from the run."

He was reportedly at Snowbowl with some friends.

The circumstances surrounding the crash are still under investigation.

"Nothing suspicious was noted. He was skiing by himself. He was up there skiing with some friends is our understanding, but there was nothing out of the ordinary. We don’t suspect drugs or alcohol at this time either," said Jon Paxton with the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies also believe the man was wearing a helmet.

While investigators are still determining his ski skill level, they encourage everyone to know their limits and be careful.

Arizona Snowbowl statement

"On January 22, 2024, at approximately 10:38 AM, Arizona Snowbowl Ski Patrol responded to an incident that occurred on the Upper Ridge Trail. Arizona Snowbowl Ski Patrol followed protocol until care was transferred to Guardian Medical Transports.

The incident is now in the care of local authorities and is currently under investigation. For further inquiries please reach out to the Coconino County Sheriff's Department.

At Snowbowl, we will continue to educate our guests about the National Ski Areas Association's 'Your Responsibility Code' in order to promote safety and awareness across the mountain.

1.  Always stay in control. You must be able to stop or avoid people or objects.
2.  People ahead or downhill of you have the right-of-way. You must avoid them.
3.  Stop only where you are visible from above and do not restrict traffic.
4.  Look uphill and avoid others before starting downhill or entering a trail.
5.  You must prevent runaway equipment.
6.  Read and obey all signs, warnings, and hazard markings.
7.  Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
8.  You must know how and be able to load, ride and unload lifts safely. If you need assistance, ask the lift attendant.
9.  Do not use lifts or terrain when impaired by alcohol or drugs.
10.  If you are involved in a collision or incident, share your contact information with each other and a ski area employee."

Where the incident happened