HAILEY, Idaho (AP) — A retired ranger who helped start the U.S. Forest Service National Avalanche Center died while mountain biking near his home in Idaho. Doug Abromeit of Hailey was 65.

Two friends riding with Abromeit say he fell from his bike during an afternoon ride. Blaine County Sheriff Gene Ramsey says their attempts to revive him were unsuccessful. Blaine County Coroner Russ Mikel says Abromeit, a hardy outdoorsman who hiked high mountain peaks in mid-winter during his Forest Service career, appears to have died of natural causes.

He retired from his post as director of the National Avalanche Center in 2011. The center's locations across the West provide information for backcountry travelers to help limit deaths and injuries in snow slides. Throughout his career, Abromeit worked as a ski patroller and smokejumper.