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US snowboarder dies in Chile backcountry accident

By Lynn Herrmann     Jul 21, 2011 in Sports
Whitefish - Professional US snowboarder Aaron Robinson died on Tuesday from head trauma injuries suffered while snowboarding in Chile’s backcountry near Valle Nevado, just two days after arriving in the South American country to shoot a snowboarding film.
Robinson, 24, was snowboarding in the Santa Teresita section of El Colorado Ski Resort, an out-of-bounds backcountry area accessible from the back of a lift. The closed area is hazardous due to landslide conditions, excessive rocks, and difficult rescue terrain.
The young snowboarder fell, and rolled down a part of the mountain, hitting his head and losing consciousness, police said. He was taken to a nearby mountain emergency unit where he showed weak vital signs. Transworld Snowboarding reports he died mid-flight on a helicopter transporting him to Santiago.
“This sad event underlines the importance of following the safety instructions that the ski center has arranged for its visitors, who must only ski in the permitted zones so we avoid tragedies like the one that just happened,” said safety director Luis Correa, the Santiago Times reports.
Robinson, originally from Whitefish, Montana, arrived in Chile on Sunday, with plans to stay there until August. He was reportedly involved in the continuation of shooting a snowboarding film for FunBlock Films. His death is the first casualty for Chile’s Metropolitan Region snow season. El Colorado is located about an hour northeast of Santiago, the nation’s capital.
Colin Wiseman, editor of Frequency: The Snowboarder’s Journal, said: “Aaron was one of the most talented young snowboarders on the planet,” ESPN reports. “His confident, relaxed style in all terrain was a joy to watch. His outgoing, positive attitude was unsurpassed. I had the good fortune of spending a fair bit of time on the road with him, and he brought energy and stoke that inspired the crew around him to make the most of each and every day, no matter the circumstances. I'm really going to miss him.”
In March, Robinson won the North Face Masters of Snowboarding for the second consecutive year.
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