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February 18, 2013
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Grand County Search and Rescue recovers body of snowmobiler near Corona Pass

Grand County Search and Rescue responded to a report of a fatal snowmobile accident on the Corona (Rollins) Pass road east of Winter Park at 2 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18.

The 51-year-old male snowmobiler from Idaho Springs was northbound on the groomed trail when he apparently lost control of his machine and ran off the trail, striking a tree six feet above the ground. The accident was discovered by his companions.

The man, who was not wearing a helmet, was pronounced dead at the scene. The man has been identified as Michael Ford, 43.

Fifteen members of GCSAR extricated the body to the Lakota trailhead. The damaged snowmobile, which was owned by one of the man's companions, was impounded by the Grand County Sheriff.

This is the second backcountry fatality this month for the rescue team. Local resident Dawn Cone, 85, who had been cross country skiing, was found dead of natural causes off Highway 125 on Feb. 8.

Earlier Monday many of the same GCSAR team members had responded to a search for an overdue skier whose vehicle was found parked at the Meadow Creek trailhead. Peter Gibbs of Estes Park was found a short distance away while returning to his vehicle. He had stayed an extra night in a cabin without notifying his family, who had reported him missing.

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The Sky-Hi News Updated Feb 19, 2013 02:40PM Published Feb 18, 2013 09:25PM Copyright 2013 The Sky-Hi News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.