New Updates on Annual Avalanche Report Shows Colorado and Montana Have Highest Rates of Avalanche Fatalities

Ryan Kime | | Industry NewsIndustry News
Natural avalanche slide on Crowne Butte
Natural avalanche slide on Crowne Butte, Cooke City, Montana. pc mtavalanche-min

In an effort to provide you with the best information available, here’s an important follow-up on an article we published earlier in the week titled, Annual Avalanche Report Shows Colorado and Montana With Highest Rates of Avalanche Fatalities.

The article discusses the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center’s annual report of fatalities from avalanches across states within the last 10 years. There was also some general suggestion as to the reasons why these may have occurred and it was mistakenly reported as due to being new or unaware of these avalanche areas.

Thankful for the correction and for providing a more detailed analysis, (CSAC) had this to say,

There were 3 fatal accidents in Montana last season, all in the SW part of the state. All 3 groups were snowmobilers from the Midwest (with a couple on snowbikes). Two of the three groups were familiar with the advisory and had some level of education. In one of those cases the danger was rated LOW and in the other MODERATE. The first fatal incident was in a group with safety gear but no training/education and was during a CONSIDERABLE danger. The riders in 2 if not all 3 groups were experienced in the area where they were caught and had been there before.

That’s a complete summary of all fatal incidents in the state of Montana last winter.

These were not new people to the area, nor had they moved there. The demographic was typical – riders from the Midwest who had been there before, had safety gear, and in two cases had some avalanche education. While most incidents nationwide occur in considerable danger conditions (43% this season, with 21% not known or with no advisory) two of these three happened in low or moderate conditions. The one during a rating of low was the only such incident in the US this season.

While it’s hard to put a number on it a significant number of fatalities each season involve people who did take an avalanche course.”

We greatly appreciate and are thankful for our loyal readers who help us give you the best information available, especially when it comes to avalanche safety.

Fixing Errors.
Correcting mistakes and inaccuracies. pc: mywebkc

Related Articles

Got an opinion? Let us know...