BOZEMAN – Two skiers out of a group of four were transported to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital after an avalanche in the rock chutes above Fairy Lake Monday.
At about 4 p.m. Search and Rescue was dispatched to the area of Fairy Lake for a reported avalanche. One patient contacted a friend through text messaging, and the friend had called 911.
Rescuers were dropped off initially by helicopter but had to traverse about a quarter mile skiing across steep snow slopes. They reached the first patient, who had a broken leg, at about 5:20 p.m. Rescuers found a second skier, who had sustained head injuries, high above them on the slope.
The first patient was put in a rescue toboggan and skied to a helicopter landing zone below Fairy Lake. He was loaded in Summit Air Ambulance and transported to the hospital. The second patient was lowered 500 feet using ropes to the bottom of the run out then flown by Carrish helicopters to a waiting AMR ambulance below Fairy Lake.
Officials warn backcountry users that avalanches are still possible because of recent snowfall.