Devastating Avalanche Takes Lives of Two Snowmobilers in Montana
It was just over two weeks ago when we got word of an avalanche claiming two lives in eastern Idaho not far from the Montana border.
This week, Associated Press reports that two men died in an avalanche in the mountains north of Yellowstone National Park. They were part of a larger group riding near Cooke City.
The Park County Sheriff's office received a report of an avalanche on Scotch Bonnet Mountain that buried two snowmobilers. Search and Rescue personnel responded to the scene and located two individuals that were already deceased.
The scene must have been made even more horrific by the attempts of one rider to help one of his companions, a relative, whose snowmobile got stuck. As the second individual attempted to assist, the avalanche hit and buried them both. The other 6 members of the snowmobiling party located the two buried men and attempted life saving measures.
Such an awesome and intimidating, yet irresistible site Scotch Bonnet Mountain must be to Montana's outdoor recreation enthusiasts. With a summit of over 10,000 feet, when covered with deep snow it no doubt tempts and challenges countless snowmobilers every year.
It's unimaginable what those last few minutes of helplessness must have been like for those two riders, just trying to take in a day of Montana's spectacular winter splendor.The avalanche was estimated at four to five feet deep, and built up momentum on an estimated 300-to-500-foot vertical drop.
Associated Press also reported that the victims were identified as Jesse Thelen of Paynesville, Minnesota, and his cousin Carl Thelen of St. Martin, Minnesota.
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