Togwotee avalanche death

Teton County Search and Rescue personnel responded Monday to a snow machine that was buried in an avalanche around 3 p.m. on Mount Leidy near Togwotee Pass. The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

A Wisconsin man riding a snow machine on Mount Leidy near Togwotee Pass on Wednesday afternoon died after being buried in an avalanche. The manner of death was accidental, and Cody Christopherson died of asphyxiation, Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue said Friday.

Christopherson, 29, was riding in a party of three, Teton County Sheriff Matt Carr said.

Teton County Search and Rescue received the call at 3:20 p.m. Wednesday.

“His riding partners were able to get him uncovered and began CPR,” Carr said.

Emergency responders escorted the man’s friends out of the Mount Leidy area on their snow machines Wednesday evening.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to pay for funeral expenses and to help his family as they grieve.

Details about how the avalanche was triggered were not available as of press time.

The Togwotee Pass snowpack has weak layers that may be sensitive to a larger trigger like a snow machine.

“The snowpack has poor structure in many areas there,” Bridger-Teton Avalanche Center Director Bob Comey said.

Iowa man Taylor Bruggeman died April 22, 2018 in a snowmobile-triggered avalanche on a steep slope in the same area.

Contact Emily Mieure at 732-7066, or @JHNGcourts.

(1) comment

Dave Valley

Pretty sure all the avalanche events since the start of this winter happened when the BTAC hazard rating was "Moderate".

It should be a reminder that a forecast represents only a toddler-like understanding of reality outside of a 100' radius: diminishing the further you venture from a test pit and highly unreliable.

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