On Monday, a snowmobiler was killed after he triggered and was fully buried in an avalanche in a canyon west of Utah Lake. The victim’s body was buried beneath 22 feet of snow.
The 38-year-old man was snowmobiling with a group of five in Pole Canyon near Lewiston Peak, Cedar Fort. He and a friend were caught in the “very large avalanche.” Both men were wearing beacons and had shovels and probes. His friend managed to escape the slide and raise the alarm.
“On Monday, March 27, two snowmobilers were riding in the Oquirrh Mountains. One was caught, carried, and fully buried in a very large avalanche. His partner, friends and family, Utah County Search and Rescue, Utah Department of Public Safety, and LifeFlight participated in the rescue, but he sadly did not survive. He was located with an avalanche transceiver and a probe, but he was buried very deeply, and digging him out took a very long time. The victim had deployed an avalanche airbag which was deflated when he was found.
Our sincerest condolences go out to everyone affected by this tragic avalanche.”
– Utah Avalanche Center preliminary report
Search and rescue teams took a helicopter to the scene and were still trying to locate the man at 8:30 pm.
Officials announced this morning that his body was located and taken to the state medical examiner late Monday night.
Further details about the avalanche are unavailable pending an official investigation.
The death is the 22nd avalanche fatality in the US this season, the second in Utah, and the 34th in North America.