Father and son killed in avalanche on the shores of Lake Louise

A Parks Canada spokesman says the avalanche risk was high in an area where a father and son were killed when snow rushed down the slope where they had gone to toboggan in Lake Louise, Alta.

LAKE LOUISE — A Parks Canada spokesman says the avalanche risk was high in an area where a father and son were killed when snow rushed down the slope where they had gone to toboggan in Lake Louise, Alta.

Banff National Park resource conservation manager Bill Hunt says RCMP requested the aid of Parks Canada Search and Rescue personnel to help look for the two on Saturday afternoon.

Hunt says a Parks Canada team found a partially buried toboggan in the avalanche debris/

It helped searchers locate the victims at the base of Mount Fairview on the shore of Lake Louise.

Mounties say the man, 33, and his son, 11, were from Montreal and may have been buried for almost a week.

Const. Phil Caza said the pair were reported missing Friday, but the last anyone recalled seeing them was on Sunday, March 9, when they rented the toboggan.

“We’re still working to see if any hotel staff came in contact with them, but it’s most likely it was the 9th,” Caza said.

Caza said the slope where the pair were located can be accessed by walking on the frozen lake. He said it can even be seen from the Chateau Lake Louise hotel.

He said that after searchers found the toboggan partially sticking out from the snow, dogs were used to pick up the scent of the missing father and son and their bodies were then dug out.

The avalanche and its debris, he explained, had landed on the frozen lake. Water then pushed onto the surface and soaked the snow, later freezing.

The names of the victims are being withheld pending notification of their next of kin.

“They were on holiday. It’s my understanding it’s break time now for schools in Montreal,” Caza said.

Hunt, meanwhile, noted the area where they were found is an “avalanche slope” and there are a number of avalanches in that area every year.

He said the avalanche hazard for that region of the park was rated as high, and it isn’t in an area where Parks Canada does avalanche control work.

Hunt said it’s believed they were not familiar with the area or the risk.

“In this case it would appear that we’re dealing with someone who just had no idea even to need to ask for the information,” Hunt said.

Parks Canada has taken efforts to make the avalanche risk known to visitors through additional signage, radio messages, and making avalanche forecasts available through hotels and equipment rental shops, Hunt said.

“That’s something we’ve struggled with for a long time now,” he added.

It’s been a bad weekend for snow slides.

A 36-year-old man from Lloydminster, Saskatchewan died of injuries he suffered Friday night in an avalanche near Blue River, B.C., about halfway between Kamloops and Jasper, Alta.

And a 38-year-old man from Calgary was critically injured Saturday when he and some fellow skiers triggered an avalanche in Alberta’s Banff National Park.

Just Posted

Red Deer teacher contracts condemning same-sex relationships ‘not acceptable’

Eggen says Red Deer Catholic Schools assured him they no longer have employees sign the form

Second-degree murder trial on hold until January

Jury not back until Jan. 7 for 2015 stabbing death trial while lawyers argue evidence issues

Hospitalizations jump in Red Deer due to opioid poisonings

Small city hospitals impacted more by opioid crisis

Stray dog spotted in one Red Deer neighbourhood, could be missing for 1 year

Red Deerians asked not to feed this german shepard

WATCH: CP Holiday Train rolls into Lacombe

Kelly Prescott performed for hundreds of Central Albertans

Trump comments upend U.S. approach to Huawei, trade talks

WASHINGTON — The United States and China have taken pains this week… Continue reading

WATCH: CP Holiday Train rolls into Lacombe

Kelly Prescott performed for hundreds of Central Albertans

Dumba scores twice, Wild rout Canadiens 7-1

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Reeling and banged up, the Minnesota Wild were… Continue reading

Coach Hunter wants up-tempo Team Canada as world junior squad hits ice

COLWOOD, B.C. — Team Canada coach Tim Hunter says the team that… Continue reading

Study finds female-led films outperform male ones

NEW YORK — A study organized by Time’s Up, the organization formed… Continue reading

Price Is Right contestant wins winter trip to Winnipeg, Churchill

WINNIPEG — Who wants to visit Winnipeg in the dead of winter?… Continue reading

CBC Gem streaming service to launch exclusive content, partners with Wattpad

TORONTO — The CBC has launched a new streaming service featuring live… Continue reading

‘Part of the solution:’ Alberta seeks proposals to build new refinery

EDMONTON — Alberta is looking for someone to build a new oil… Continue reading

Most Read