Alaska News

Anchorage man killed in avalanche on the Kenai Peninsula

An Anchorage man was killed in an avalanche Saturday on the Kenai Peninsula, the Alaska State Troopers said.

Jeffery Cheng, 33, was backcountry skiing with two friends in the area of the Crescent Lake Saddle Cabin when Cheng was “overtaken by an avalanche,” about a quarter mile east of the cabin, according to troopers.

Bryce Fischer, 27, of Anchorage and Cody Lourie, 33, of Anchorage, “recovered Cheng from 6 ft of snow cover and performed CPR for 30 minutes,” troopers wrote.

Fischer traveled back to the trailhead by snowboard find cell service and call for help, the dispatch said.

Troopers, emergency responders from Moose Pass and U.S. Forest Service used snowmachines to get to the remote site.

The Crescent Saddle Cabin is located southwest of Moose Pass. To access it, people travel about 7 miles up the Carter Lake Trailhead at milepost 34 of the Seward Highway, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

Cheng’s body was taken to Kenai Peninsula Memorial Hospital. His family has been notified.


According to the American Avalanche Association online database, the death is the first avalanche fatality in Alaska in the winter of 2018-2019.

Correction: An earlier version of this story said that Jeffery Cheng and the other men were snowboarding, based on information from the Alaska State Troopers. Cheng was skiing at the time of the avalanche, troopers later said.

Michelle Theriault Boots

Michelle Theriault Boots is a longtime reporter for the Anchorage Daily News. She focuses on in-depth stories about the intersection of public policy and Alaskans' lives. Before joining the ADN in 2012, she worked at daily newspapers up and down the West Coast and earned a master's degree from the University of Oregon.