Jan. 18 (UPI) -- One skier has died and another is critically injured after they were caught in an avalanche this week at a famous New Mexico ski resort.
The two were rescued near the top of Kachina Peak at Taos Ski Valley -- which, at 12,481 feet, is the highest mountain in the complex. They had gotten caught in the avalanche early Thursday.
Both were alive when pulled from the snow, but Holy Cross Hospital in Taos said later Thursday that one had died from his injuries. The second was airlifted to University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque.
A search involving dozens of rescuers was called off after it was determined no one else needed rescuing.
New Mexico's Sangre de Cristo Mountains, where the resort is located, has received twice their usual snowfall since the start of the new year, and up to 16 inches in the past week.
Resort spokesman Chris Stagg said the Taos ski patrol team detonated explosives in the area, called avalanche mitigation work, to reduce the avalanche risk.
The peak features a ski lift regarded as the highest in North America. It opened Tuesday for the ski season.