Avalanche kills snowmobiler north of West Yellowstone

WEST YELLOWSTONE- The Gallatin Co. Sheriff’s Office says an avalanche killed a Minnesota man Tuesday.

Search and Rescue crews were dispatched to the Cabin Creek area just before 5:00 p.m.

GPS coordinates indicated the caller was about 19 miles north of West Yellowstone, on the west side of Sage Peak.

According to the Gallatin National Avalanche Center, six riders from Minnesota assessed the slopes from the base and chose not to climb them, instead staying lower on the hill. In a Facebook post, the GNFAC says a rider ended up triggering the slide from below and was buried three feet deep under his sled.

People who were with him were able to locate the sled and confirm the rider’s location with an avalanche beacon. It took the others about 15 minutes to dig the rider out, but he did not survive.

Rescuers from the sheriff’s office, the West Yellowstone Division of the Gallatin Co. Search and Rescue and Air Methods responded. The search commander also requested a helicopter from Air Idaho to help.

Searchers instructed individuals on the ground to find and improve a landing zone for the helicopter. The Air Idaho helicopter was able to land about a half hour after it was dispatched.

The victim has been identified as 40-year-old Waylon W Wiedemann.

The coroner and the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center will investigate on Wednesday.