O.C. Snowboarder Killed in Fall From Backcountry Trail Near Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort

In February 2019, a snow plow clears a road near Highway 395 near Mammoth Lakes as heavy snow blankets the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains. (Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

In February 2019, a snow plow clears a road near Highway 395 near Mammoth Lakes as heavy snow blankets the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains. (Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A 31-year-old man from Los Alamitos died after falling from a backcountry trail while snowboarding near Mammoth Mountain ski resort, authorities said Wednesday.

Around 3:50 p.m. Tuesday, a 911 caller reported seeing someone fall from the cliffs above Twin Lakes, which is across from Tamarack Lodge and north of the popular backcountry chute “Hole in the Wall,” according to a statement from the Mono County Sheriff’s Office.

Paramedics and firefighters were immediately dispatched to the area. They hiked up to the location, where they found the body of Justin Khoshnevis, the statement said.

His snowboard was recovered near the path of his descent.

Khoshnevis was snowboarding alone when he apparently came across the ridgeline from “Dragon’s Tail,” an area that is out of bounds from Mammoth’s ski resort.

The Orange County man was possibly trying to ride “Hole in the Wall,” although authorities noted the chute would not have been accessible from his approach.

“This tragic incident is a reminder that ski area boundaries are established for your safety,” the Sheriff’s Office said. “Anything outside the ski area boundary is considered backcountry, and the decision to enter the backcountry should be made with great care.”

Officials urged skiers and snowboarders to never ride alone through backcountry areas and to have the proper equipment. They should also have a plan and know the route.

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