Colorado Reporter Dies Skiing

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Eldora, CO, Feb. 6 (AP)--A longtime Colorado newspaper reporter died on Saturday after apparently hitting a tree while skiing on an expert trail, his colleagues said.

Ted Nelson, 50, was found lying unconscious next to a tree at about 3 p.m. on a ``double-diamond'' run at the Eldora ski area, about 30 miles northwest of Denver, officials said. He was pronounced dead an hour later due to severe head and chest trauma.

Authorities did not release an identity, but colleagues at the Longmont (Colo.) Times-Call said the skier was Nelson, the newspaper's government reporter and an accomplished outdoors enthusiast.

Curt Anderson, the newspaper's managing editor, said Nelson had worked at the Times-Call for four years and was to turn 51 on Monday.

After years in journalism, Nelson ``still had that passion for being a government watchdog and a defender of the First Amendment,'' Anderson said. ``He still had that zeal.''

Nelson was a veteran Colorado reporter who had also worked at the Salida Mail and the Alamosa Valley Courier, Anderson said. He had left the state and worked at Idaho's Bonners Ferry Herald and Sandpoint Daily Bee and The LeGrande (Ore.) Observer before joining the Times-Call, he said.

Copyright (c) 2000 The Associated Press