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Snowmobiler dies after being caught in an avalanche in Gallatin County

A snowmobiler died after being caught by an avalanche in the Lionhead area several miles west/northwest of West Yellowstone on Sunday, February 6, 2022.
Avalanche Danger MTN
Posted at 9:56 AM, Feb 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-07 12:41:35-05

BOZEMAN — A snowmobiler died after being caught by an avalanche in the Lionhead area several miles west/northwest of West Yellowstone on Sunday, February 6, 2022.

The initial call for help was received at 4:48 pm by the West Yellowstone Dispatch Center. The snowmobiler was reportedly involved in an avalanche in the Dry Fork of Denny Creek, about 10 miles west of West Yellowstone.

Initial reports indicated the injured snowmobiler was unresponsive and members of the group were performing CPR.

A snowmobile rescue team deployed immediately up the trail. Lifesaving efforts were attempted for more than an hour, but were not successful.

The victim’s name has not yet been released.

Responding agencies included Gallatin County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue in West Yellowstone, National Forest Service, Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center, Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks, and Hebgen Basin Rural Fire Department responded to Denny Creek.

The GNFAC provided the following information about current conditions:

The wind increased late yesterday afternoon in Hyalite Canyon and will continue to transport recent snow into unstable drifts where avalanches large enough to injure or bury climbers, skiers and riders are possible. Large avalanches in the West Yellowstone area and near Big Sky and in the Bridger Range are unlikely with yesterday's events being a tragic exception to overall stability. Weak layers a foot under the snow surface signify more trouble to come when the wind blows or snow returns.

This marks the third avalanche-related death in recent weeks in Montana. Two snowmobilers were caught and died in an avalanche on Scotch Bonnet Mountain, north of Cooke City, on December 27; click here to read more.

We will update you when we get more information.