New Fire in Gallatin Canyon

On November 5th, 2020 at 1:15, Gallatin County Dispatch received a call of a wildland fire near the Porcupine Creek Wildlife Management Area, east of Highway 191 near mile marker 45. Due to wind and fuel conditions, the fire moved at a rapid pace north but has slowed down at this time. Warning notifications are being given for residences in the area. Approximately 400 acres of Porcupine Creek Wilderness Area have been involved. No structure loss is reported at this time.

Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, Big Sky Fire, Bozeman Fire, Hyalite Fire, Forest Service, DNRC, Yellowstone Club Fire Department, and Montana Highway Patrol are all assisting with the fire.

Photo courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

South Cottonwood Hiking Rescue

On November 3, 2020 at 1:09 pm, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Deputies and Search and Rescue personnel a report of a man who slipped and fell while descending South Cottonwood trail in the Custer Gallatin National Forest. The caller said her husband had slipped on the icy trail, resulting in a bad fall.  The man was in substantial pain from an injury to his quadriceps and unable to get back on his feet due to the injury.

Search and Rescue volunteers located the patient and transported him to the South Cottonwood trailhead on a one-wheel litter. AMR Paramedics transported the patient to Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital for further medical evaluation.

Photo courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Great One Skiing Fatality

On November 3, 2020 at 1:23 pm, the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office and Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue responded to the Bridger Mountains, near Sacajawea Peak, for a skier who had suffered injuries in a fall.

Two women had hiked in from Fairy Lake to ski the Great One. The first skier successfully completed a run. The second skier ran into difficulty and fell during the run, resulting in traumatic injuries.  The first woman called 911 and initiated CPR. Unfortunately, due to the severity of injuries, lifesaving efforts were unsuccessful. Search and Rescue volunteers were able to reach the scene by helicopter and both women were transported to a nearby landing zone. The surviving woman was further assisted by a Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Deputy and Chaplain.

The deceased woman has been identified as Caroline Lupori, a Bozeman resident originally from Colorado.

Photo courtesy of the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Drug Take Back Day Cancelled

Drug Take Back Day has been cancelled due to the recent rise in covid-19 cases. Expired or unused drugs can be dropped off at Drug Take Back Bins at these locations:
• Law and Justice Center, 605 S. 16th, Bozeman
• Bozeman Police Department 30 N. Rouse, Bozeman
• MSU Police Department
• Highland Park Pharmacy, at Bozeman Health Hospital (available during Pharmacy business hours)
• Belgrade Police Dept/City Hall, 91 E. Central Ave, Belgrade
• Manhattan Police Dept, 120 W. Main Street, Manhattan
• Three Forks City Hall, 206 N Main St, Three Forks (available during business hours)
• Big Sky Sheriff’s Office, 650 Rainbow Trout Run (available when a deputy is in the office or by calling 582-2100 and asking to speak to a Big Sky deputy)
• West Yellowstone Police Dept, 124 Yellowstone Ave., West Yellowstone
• Park County Sheriff’s Office, 414 E. Callender, Livingston

Drug Take Back Day this Saturday

Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs by family members and visitors, including children and teens. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.

To address this problem, DEA and partner organizations have set up Drug Take Back Days when the public can bring unused, unwanted or expired prescription drugs for safe disposal, no questions asked and at no cost to them. Last fall, 1720 pounds of drugs were collected in Montana. All drugs gathered are incinerated by the DEA.

You can get rid of any expired or unused drugs at the Drug Take Back Day, October 24, including pills, capsules, and patches. Drop them off at the Law and Justice Center between 10am and 2 pm. This is an opportunity to safely and anonymously empty out your medicine cabinet of drugs that have expired or that you don’t need any more, including over-the-counter drugs and prescription drugs that contain controlled substances.

Expired or unused drugs  can also be dropped off at Drug Take Back Bins at these locations:

  • Law and Justice Center, 605 S. 16th, Bozeman
  • Bozeman Police Department 30 N. Rouse, Bozeman
  • MSU Police Department
  • Highland Park Pharmacy, at Bozeman Health Hospital (available during Pharmacy business hours)
  • Belgrade Police Dept/City Hall, 91 E. Central Ave, Belgrade
  • Manhattan Police Dept, 120 W. Main Street, Manhattan
  • Three Forks City Hall, 206 N Main St, Three Forks (available during business hours)
  • Big Sky Sheriff’s Office, 650 Rainbow Trout Run (Available when a deputy is in the office or by calling 582-2100 and asking to speak to a Big Sky deputy)
  • West Yellowstone Police Dept, 124 Yellowstone Ave., West Yellowstone
  • Park County Sheriff’s Office, 414 E. Callender, Livingston

Hunters Rescued up Hyalite

On Sunday, October 11th at 10:02 pm, Gallatin County 911 took a report of two overdue mountain goat hunters. The reporting party had located their vehicle at the Blackmore Trailhead up Hyalite Canyon. The missing hunters were from the Bozeman area and were experienced hunters. They were prepared for the change in weather and had provisions, so Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue decided it would be safest to wait until first light before starting the search.

With help from the Air Force Rescue Communication Center, it was determined that the Elephant Mountain and Palace Lake areas were good areas to begin search efforts. At 10:19 am Monday morning the hunters were located near Palace Lake with the help of Central Copters. The hunters and their equipment were flown out to the Hyalite Dam. The hunters were not injured. High winds, snow, and the difficult terrain had forced them to hunker down and wait for better conditions.

Photo courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Leverich Canyon Bike Crash

On Saturday afternoon at 3:53 pm, Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue, Hyalite Fire, and AMR were dispatched to Leverich Canyon for a girl who was involved in a mountain bike crash. She had fallen on a steep side hill, sustained an injury, and was unable to continue down the trail. Rescuers located her .7 mile up from the trailhead. She was treated for a fall injury and transported to an awaiting AMR Ambulance, which transported her to Bozeman Health for further medical assistance.

Photos courtesy of the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Madison River Death

(Gallatin County, Mont) On September 29th, 2020 at 1:45, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, Three Forks Ambulance, and Three Forks Fire Department responded to the lower Madison River, approximately two miles north of Cobblestone Fishing Access, for a canoe that had flipped over due to a large cottonwood tree/snag in the river channel.

Two fishermen found one man on a gravel bank with minor injuries and deceased man still in the vessel, caught in the snag. The reporting fishermen were able to get cell service to call dispatch. With the help of deputies and Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, all parties were accounted for and recovered. Cause of death is under investigation by the Gallatin County Coroner’s Office.

The deceased man has been identified as Scot E. Smith II of Belgrade.

Photo courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Bear Canyon Low-Angle Rescue

(Gallatin County, Mont) At 7:40 pm on September 29, 2020, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue was dispatched to Bear Canyon for a woman who suffered traumatic injuries after to a rock-climbing fall. Search and Rescue volunteers reached the patient and used technical rescue skills to perform a low-angle rescue to bring her back to the trail. A low-angle rescue involves dozens of rescuers setting up anchor points, creating pulley systems, and using specialized belay and patient litter packaging techniques to carefully move the patient to a safe place. The patient was then transported to the trailhead and transferred to American Medical Response to be taken to Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital. The patient was treated for non-life threatening injuries to her head, arm, and leg.

Photos courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Bridger Foothills Fire Summary

(Gallatin County, Mont) On September 5, 2020, the Bridger Foothills fire went from approximately 400 acres to over 7000 in a 6-hour period. This type of wind and fire behavior is extremely fast and dangerous. When you combine the canyon topography with residences located on long winding roads surrounded by forest, warnings and evacuations were extremely dangerous and difficult.

The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office warned and/or evacuated the following a total of 728 residences and 1674 people:

  • 588 residences (1352 people) in Gallatin County
  • 140 residences (322 people) in Park County

The evacuation area (without Bracket Creek/Skunk Creek) is 165 sq miles – see map.

Damage:

  • 28 homes lost
  • 3 injuries, all firefighters
  • 0 lives lost

The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office had 42 deputies (out of 62) who worked the fire, totaling approximately 800 overtime hours on top of regular hours worked. The following law enforcement agencies assisted with road blocks and traffic control: Park County Sheriff’s Office, Sweetgrass County Sheriff’s Office, Carbon County Sheriff’s Office, Bozeman Police Department, MSU Police Department, Montana Highway Patrol, and US Forest Service.

Sheriff Brian M. Gootkin

Map of evacuation area courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office