MOUNT HOOD, Ore. -- Police Monday identified the missing skier found dead Sunday night west of the Ski Bowl resort as Russell Tiffany, 23, of Las Vegas, Nevada.
The medical examiner said he drowned, but hypothermia and a lung infection may have also played a role.
Tiffany was submerged in a creek when crews found him. He had been with a group of skiers who were drinking at a hut Saturday night, according to Deputy Marcus Mendoza of the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.
He reportedly decided to head down the mountain alone but became disoriented and called a friend. They made plans to meet up, but he didn't make it.
He was last seen by a group of campers at Mirror Lake, Mendoza said. The campers said they called Tiffany over to their camp, but he disappeared.
Tiffany was an experienced skier who taught lessons both in Oregon and Nevada.
"He was my roommate. He moved up here in the summer,” said Kristian Larsen. “I was one of his first friends.”
"Russell had a real love for the mountain and a passion for his sport," added Bobbie Kipp, the assistant director of Timberline Snow Sport Center. “He was a friend to everybody up here and he's going to be greatly missed."
Searchers were notified Sunday morning that Tiffany was missing. They believe Tiffany became disoriented and lost track of where he was.
"Be aware of where you're at," Mendoza said. "Know your limitations if you're not familiar with a particular area. Maybe the best thing to do is ski sober. If you're not familiar with the particular area, stay in bounds."