(Bozeman, Mont.) On 03/13/2014, at about 1:15 p.m., the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office received a report of an unknown number of skiers that had been caught up in an avalanche north of Bridger Bowl. Members of Sheriff’s Search and Rescue that were already on the mountain responded with Sheriff’s Deputies and were assisted by Bridger Bowl Ski Patrol.
Rescuers found one injured skier. The skier was a 32 year old male from Bozeman that had been skiing out of bounds north of Bridger Bowl in what is called the Barney Avalanche Slide Path. The skier caused the avalanche at the ridge breaking a large cornice free and landed approximately 450 yards down the hill. The skier was able to dig his way out of the snow and fellow skiers were quick to assist and alert ski patrol.
Initial rescuers located the injured male and were able to stabilize and warm him after the area was found to be safe of secondary avalanches. Rescuers moved the skier with a transport sled to the Bridger Bowl Ski Patrol building to provide further medical assistance. The skier was then turned over to AMR and transported to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital for his injuries.
The quick response of the injured skier’s friends in calling for help aided rescuers and emergency services in performing their job in a quick and safe manner. The skiers were prepared for a back country skiing with beacons, poles and shovels. There is a high avalanche danger warning in the area. It is important to remember to have the proper equipment (food, water, extra clothing, emergency beacon, shovels, etc) when recreating in the back country.
In other search related activity today Deputies were starting to look for a man and women in their 20’s that had failed to return from a night of driving “back roads” this morning. They were able to make contact by cell phone at about 1:00 p.m. They were walking out of the 16 mile area. Meghar County Deputies assisted in transporting them back. At about 4:00 Deputies were advised that 2 other people that had gone out looking for the first 2 had failed to return. #####