"Don't let a bit of warm weather trick you into hanging up your skis … The snow's great up high right now," Canadian professional skier Dave Treadway wrote in an April 4 Instagram post. Less than two weeks later, the 34-year-old died doing what he loved. Treadway was skiing with a group near Rhododendron Mountain, not far from his home turf of Pemberton, BC, on Monday when he fell nearly 100 feet into a crevasse, reports Pique. "It was just an unfortunate incident going through unknown terrain," says David MacKenzie of the Pemberton District Search and Rescue team, of which Treadway was formerly a member. His brother still is, per Outside, though it's unclear if he was involved in recovering Treadway's body in what MacKenzie told Pique was "a very technical operation." He notes "there are crevasses all over the backcountry and in the glacial area," including some hidden by ice and snow.
Temperatures neared 60 degrees Monday, and the crevasse may have been covered by a snow bridge that was weakened by warm temperature and bright sun. Tributes to Treadway have poured in. Canadian magazine SBC Skier calls him "one of the most influential skiers of our time," per the Canadian Press. "He was an engaging and deeply caring man who surrounded everyone he met with love," says Powder photographer David Reddick. "The world just lost an incredible human being and a wonderful family is suffering unthinkable grief," adds professional freeskier Mike Douglas, per Outside. A GoFundMe page set up for Treadway's family—his wife is pregnant with the couple's third child—has raised more than $180,000 in one day. Treadway's "achievements in the mountains were only outweighed by his desire to show others the love of God," the page reads. A video shows Treadway speeding down near-vertical drops. "Oh, that's fun!" a voice says. (You may never have heard of ski slopes' "silent killer.")