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An avalanche injured a skier on the west side of the Bridger Mountains late Friday afternoon.

According to the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, at about 4 p.m., a 39-year-old Bozeman man skied off the ridge from Bridger Bowl into Truman Gulch and triggered an avalanche.

The man was carried downhill and buried for awhile, but surfaced with a knee injury. He called his friends who he had been skiing with and they called someone they knew at Bridger Bowl, then called 911 and a backcountry rescue was initiated.

Two members of the Gallatin County Search and Rescue backcountry team reached the man from the ridge. They took him down Truman Gulch. More search and rescue members who came uphill on snowmobiles met them about halfway down.

The man was then taken to an awaiting ambulance and taken to Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital by 8 p.m.

Sheriff Brian Gootkin reminded all outdoor enthusiasts that skiing in the backcountry does not come without risks, especially with recent snowfall.

In addition, if you are injured, a rescue can be a complicated affair. Calling 911 early can make a complicated event less so.

Gootkin thanked all of the volunteers who responded to this incident. The temperatures were cold and the conditions were hazardous, he noted.

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Freddy Monares can be reached at 406-582-2630, or by email at

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