News & Features

Skier Triggers Avalanche at Whitefish Mountain Resort

No one was injured after avalanche came down Haskill Slide Thursday afternoon

No one was injured when a skier who entered a closed area triggered an avalanche inside the boundaries of Whitefish Mountain Resort on Thursday afternoon.

Whitefish Mountain Resort Ski Patrol responded to a report of an avalanche on the Haskill Slide, an ungroomed run on the east side of Big Mountain, shortly before 3 p.m. The avalanche brought debris all the way down to the Over The Hill Gang run, not far from Chair 5. Members of the Whitefish Mountain Resort Ski Patrol searched the slide area for skiers and snowboarders as a precaution, but no one was in the debris field.

Spokesperson Riley Polumbus said the area the slide came down had been closed earlier in the day because of the threat of avalanches but that the skier who triggered the slide apparently ignored the closure sign.

On Friday, East Rim, Haskill Slide and First Creek will be closed because of the potential for additional avalanches.

On the other side of the mountain, Hellroaring Basin has been closed since Tuesday night after a groomer operator discovered a natural slide in the area. Ski patrol used explosives to trigger two other slides in the same area on Wednesday and Thursday, but Polumbus said it is likely the Hellroaring Basin will remain closed through the weekend.

“Everyone should read the snow report, know what’s open, what’s closed and obey all closures,” Polumbus said.

The Flathead Avalanche Center was reporting “high” slide conditions across the region as warm weather increased the potential for wet slides.

 

 

If you enjoy stories like this one, please consider joining the Flathead Beacon Editor’s Club. For as little as $5 per month, Editor’s Club members support independent local journalism and earn a pipeline to Beacon journalists. Members also gain access to www.beaconeditorsclub.com, where they will find exclusive content like deep dives into our biggest stories and a behind-the-scenes look at our newsroom.