Accident: Trout Creek

Observer Name
Craig Gordon
Observation Date
Sunday, December 12, 2004
Occurrence Date
Saturday, December 11, 2004
Occurence Time
Unknown

Region:

Location Name or Route
Trout Creek
Elevation
9700
Aspect
Northeast
Trigger
Snowmobiler
Trigger: additional info
Unintentionally Triggered
Weak Layer
Facets
Depth
4'
Width
1/4 mile
Vertical
Unknown
Carried
1
Caught
1
Buried - Fully
1
Killed
1
Accident and Rescue Summary

Accident Summary:

Two males had been snowmobiling in the upper Trout Creek drainage. They decided to go to a slope very familiar to them. At around 11:30 they arrived at the base of the slope. They decided the more experienced of the two, who was wearing a beacon and did have a shovel, would attempt to climb the slope first. About mid way up, he got his machine stuck. He worked on it for a while, got hot and took off his helmet. While he was trying to get unstuck his partner, who had no rescue gear, climbed an adjacent slope. His intention was to get high enough on the slope in order to ride down to the stuck machine and assist in the excavation. As the witness got to the top of a bench he saw the crown start to propagate on the same slope the victim was on. The witness realized a large avalanche had been triggered. He circled back around to find no sign of the victim.

Rescue Summary:

The witness rode his machine to a nearby ridge and called 911. He also flagged down 3 or 4 riders to help him with the search. They followed him back and began probing likely areas with broken branches. The witness then jumped back on his machine and climbed another ridge and flagged down two riders who had beacons, shovels, and probes. They returned to the scene and found the victim within 5-7 minutes after their arrival using their beacons.  It took another 7-10 minutes to dig him out. He was buried about 4’ deep, face up, not breathing and CPR was initiated. His machine was buried as well and later located about 60’ downhill.

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