ASPEN, Colo. – The Aspen Skiing Co. has opened an investigation after a snowboarder claims he was pushed off a chairlift Sunday morning by a skier he was riding up the mountain with at Aspen Highlands.
The snowboarder, Seth Beckton, 28, of Aspen, posted a warning on his Facebook page.
“Be on the lookout for a skier chucking snowboarders off chairlifts. Yes, this is real … Happened to me today while having a seemingly normal conversation riding up Loge chair at Highlands about (powder) when I made this comment ‘to get (expletive) deep (powder) shots you just need to be on your edges,’” Beckton posted.
Beckton claims that after making the comment the skier, who he said was a white man in his late 20s or early 30s, took offense.
“He replied, ‘Are you laughing at me?’ Me ‘Kind of … yes??’ ‘Well is this funny?’ … he then proceeded to push/pull me off the chair,” Beckton said on Facebook.
Beckton said he fell face-first approximately 20 to 25 feet and luckily landed in “a fluffy pile of snow.”
Beckton said since he wasn’t injured he didn’t immediately report the incident and continued to ride and kept a lookout for the skier.
According to the Aspen Times, after Breckton talked with some friends about the incident he realized how serious it was and reported it later in the day.
“I should have been more aggressive in reporting it,” Beckton told the Aspen Times. “What if he does it to somebody else?”
Aspen Skiing Co. Jeff Hanle told the Aspen Times that if Beckton reported the incident earlier ski patrol members and other employees might have had a better chance of finding the skier. Hanle said the company still plans a full investigation in hopes of tracking down the skier.
“This is not the kind of behavior we want on our mountain,” Hanle told the Aspen Times. “We will do our best to find the person.”
Hanle said that after speaking with Beckton he doesn’t have reason to doubt his story.
The Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office is also looking into the incident even though Beckton hasn’t filed a report with them. They’re looking at video taken on the mountain around the time it allegedly occurred.