FATALITY ARTICLES

Ohio researcher dies in Yellowstone avalanche

From: The Jackson Hole Guide
A 26-year old Ohio man was killed in an avalanche in Yellowstone National Park Saturday while tracking mountain lions in the Lamar Valley area.

Gregory Felzien of Bellbrook, Ohio was conducting mountain lion research activities in Yellowstone for the Wildlife Research Institute, affiliated with the University of Idaho at Moscow, according to Park Superintendent Bob Barbee.

After Felzien was reported missing Saturday evening, an air and ground search began Sunday morning, Barbee said.

Searchers found Felzien's car parked along the road, south of Pebble Creek Camground and near Mt. Norris, according to park Spokeswoman Marsha Karle.

They followed Felzien's foot tracks through a minimal snow cover and located his body in the avalanche area Sunday at about 2:26 p.m., Karle said.

The avalanche path was about 30 feet wide, 300 feet long and five feet deep, she said.

Felzien's body was transported by helicopter to the Buffalo Ranch in the Lamar Valley and than by ground to the Franzen-Davis-Bebee Mortuary in Livingston, Mont., according to Barbee.

Officials blamed the slide on early spring weather, which resulted in extremely hazardous backcountry snow conditions.

Skiers and others entering the Yellowstone backcountry should check avalanche conditions first by calling 433-7381.

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