LA GRANDE, Oregon -- A large avalanche in the Elkhorn Mountains of eastern Oregon Sunday caught three snowmobilers in its path, partially burying the men and wrecking their sleds.
The slide happened as a group of five snowmobiles rode near Rock Creek Canyon, about 11 miles southeast of Anthony Lakes Mountain Resort.
Forecasters with the Wallowa Avalanche Center say one rider was climbing a northeast, mid-elevation slope when he triggered the avalanche halfway up the slope. The resulting fracture caught and partially buried three riders.
Members of the party performed a self-rescue and evacuated the backcountry safely, according to the accident report.
The area posed a significant avalanche risk after a large amount of snow fell over the weekend, according to avalanche experts.