GALLATIN COUNTY — From around mid-December to mid-February, it's prime snowmobiling and snow-coach riding season in the West Yellowstone area.
That means the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office’s Search and Rescue team will be refocusing their attention during this part of the winter season.
“About a quarter of the calls we’ll experience for the year will occur in West Yellowstone during the winter. And our team for the Sheriff’s Search and Rescue are ready for it,” said Jason Jarrett with the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office.
Between accidents involving crashing into trees, avalanches and drivers getting lost, Search and Rescue plans to spend more time near the park this season.
They say a lot of these incidents involve tourists and people visiting from out of town.
“This is the time of year where we transition a little bit to the visitors that show up in West Yellowstone,” said Jarrett. “And combine horsepower, testosterone and excitement and they can get themselves jammed up a little bit.”
But Search and Rescue is out there for experienced riders, too.
“Search and Rescue is an important part and kind of a safety net for those people who are out having good days, being healthy, doing the things we want them to do, but that sometimes have a bad day,” said Jarrett.
“We’re glad to be out there to help make that bad day a good story.”
Rescue missions cost on average nearly $500 a trip.
The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office wants to remind you to take the proper precautions when you go out for your for your motorized adventures this season.
That means checking the weather forecast beforehand, being mindful of avalanche conditions and always riding with a buddy.