UPDATE: Portage men killed in Colorado avalanche - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UPDATE: Portage men killed in Colorado avalanche

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PHOTO: Lake County Office of Emergency Management PHOTO: Lake County Office of Emergency Management
LAKE COUNTY, COLORADO (WKOW) -- Two men from Portage were killed in an avalanche on a ski trip in Colorado over the weekend.

The Lake County Office of Emergency Management identified the two killed as 32-year-old Justin Lentz and 34-year-old Jarrard Law.

Friends describe the two as kind-hearted and smart, and say they shared a love of skiing and mountain-biking.

Lentz and Law were with five other skiers, who survived. Two of the survivors, 38-year-old Ben Hartt and 30-year-old Seth Neilsen, are also from Wisconsin.

The Colorado Avalanche Center says recent conditions put even the most experienced back country skiers at risk

"You need to re-evaluate the places you've gone and generally considered safe, because this is not our normal year," Brian Lazar, with the Colorado Avalanche Information Center, said. "We're seeing widespread avalanches; very large and destructive. Some of them are running bigger than they have in decades."

Officials say avalanches have killed 25 people this season.

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LAKE COUNTY, COLORADO (WKOW) -- Two men from Portage were killed in an avalanche while on a ski trip in Colorado.

Family members and friends confirm to 27 News and Madison.com the two men killed both lived in Portage. 27 News is not identifying them until their names are released by the Lake County Sheriff in Colorado.

The avalanche happened Saturday evening on Star Mountain near Independence Pass. Search and rescue crews found their bodies Sunday afternoon near Twin Lakes. The men were among seven skiers caught in the avalanche. Three others were injured.

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LAKE COUNTY, COLORADO (WKOW) -- A Wisconsin man is among the victims of a deadly avalanche on a Colorado mountain.

Two skiers were killed and three others injured in a large avalanche Saturday evening on Star Mountain. Search and rescue crews found the two bodies Sunday afternoon.

A family member tells 27 News one of those who died is a Portage native who was on a ski trip with a group of friends. The man's family was notified late Saturday night, but authorities are not releasing names of victims at this time.

Lake County Office of Emergency Management says rescue workers braved steep terrain Sunday searching for the victims near Twin Lakes in Lake County, Colorado.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center had been warning of dangerous conditions across much of the state's mountains after two weeks of heavy snow.

This is the third deadly slide in Colorado in less than a week.
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