A skier was rescued on Friday in Teton County, Wyoming, near Jackson Hole after getting caught in an avalanche and carried about 500 yards.
Matt Hansen, communication director for Teton County Search and Rescue Foundation, told CNN that two skiers were on a ski tour that began on a trail head on top of Teton Pass in the backcountry.
“At midday, while using climbing skins attached to their skis, they crossed a southeast-facing slope on Rendezvous Peak when they triggered a large avalanche,” the Teton County Search and Rescue said in a Facebook post.
One of the skiers got caught in the slide and carried about 500 yards down the mountain.
“When the avalanche stopped, he was buried up to his torso, up to about his chest, so his head was above the snow and he had one or two arms above the snow as well,” Hansen said.
The skier’s partner was able to come to his aid and help dig him out of the snow.
“After he was recovered by his partner, he learned he had suffered a leg injury as a result of the avalanche,” the Facebook post said.
Following the incident, the skiers called authorities and informed them about the avalanche, Hansen said.
The skiers initially believed they could “self-rescue and ski out of the backcountry on their own,” according to Hansen, but about an hour later they reconnected with “members of our search and rescue team on a cellular phone and they recognized that they would not be able to get out on their own and that they needed a rescue.”
A team was then deployed to rescue the skiers via helicopter and were able to bring them to safety.
Hansen said the incident serves as a reminder for anyone going skiing to take proper safety precautions. He advises being familiar with avalanche safety resources and to check Avalanche.org for more information.