Snowmobile crashes and injuries have been keeping the West Yellowstone branch of the Gallatin County Sheriff's Search and Rescue team busy this month, with five so far.
On Thursday the group responded to the report of an injured snowmobiler on the Two Top Snowmobile Trail, about five miles west of West Yellowstone. A 33-year-old woman from Beaver Creek, Ohio, had suffered a back injury when she lost control of the snowmobile she was driving and hit a tree. The driver of the snowmobile that was following her also lost control and ran into the back of her snowmobile.
The woman was transported to an awaiting Hebgen Basin Fire Department ambulance and then to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital.
Surprisingly, the high number of snowmobile crashes and injuries is not unusual for this time of year in the West Yellowstone area. Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin praised his volunteers for their response.
“If you were going to get hurt on a snowmobile, the south end of Gallatin County is a pretty good place to have it happen," he said in a prepared statement. "However, we prefer folks be prepared, recreate within their limits and exercise caution so we don’t get to meet them like this.”