Police are investigating a report by a snowboarder that he was shoved out of a chairlift by a skier Sunday at Aspen Highlands in Colorado.
Seth Beckton, the snowboarder, fell face-first 20 to 25 feet, but was fortunate to have landed in soft powder and was not injured. “I honestly thought I was dead,” he told the Aspen Times.
“Because I didn’t know where we were [or how high]. It’s not cool to think anyone would do that.” Beckton, 28, did not report the morning incident until the end of the day, at the urging of friends.
This will make it more difficult for police and ski patrollers to identify and locate the skier. But Aspen Highlands Resort and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office said Monday that they’re reviewing video and have launched investigations.
“It’s not the kind of behavior we want on our mountain,” Jeff Hanle, spokesman for Aspen Skiing Co., told the Aspen Times.
The skier, a white man in his 20s or 30s, was wearing a helmet and goggles while talking to Beckton on the Loge Peak lift. It was near the top of the lift that the skier reacted to what Beckton thought was an innocuous comment, shoving the snowboarder before he had time to react.
The lift operator stopped the lift, but not until after the skier was able to exit the and ski away. There was a third person on the lift, who thought this was an argument between friends.
Said Beckton: “I was really shooken up. I was like, ‘Was that a joke? Did that really happen?”
–Generic image shows skiers and snowboarders at Aspen Highlands. Courtesy of James Hutchison/Aspen Highlands