Snowboarder Collides with Snowcat at Mammoth Mountain, Loses Leg
Mammoth Mountain, CA - A 43-year-old woman collided with a groomer at California's Mammoth Mountain ski area last month, losing one leg in the ordeal and fracturing the other.
Kathy Willhide-Michiulis, a season pass holder at Mammoth from Santa Clarita, Calif., had to be extricated from the snowcat's tiller bar following the accident on March 25. She was airlifted to a hospital in Reno, Nev.
The incident occurred at 3:36 p.m. while Willhide-Michiulis' husband Bruno retrieved the car as she took her last run of the day on the resort's intermediate Mambo run. The groomer was headed to the ski area's old Boneyard section to retrieve a broken down snowmobile.
yikes... Why are there groomers when the run is still open? shes not a newbie, she has a pass so i duno how this happens, freak accident. That blows... for both the driver and her and her family. That driver now has that guilt for the rest of his life.
Snowcats running during operating hours at a resort is pretty common place. Especially one the size of Mammoth. The take care to stay to the sides and give as wide a berth to skier traffic as possible. Of course that doesn't account for a jack ass snowcat operator or a jackass snowboarder.
Pretty steep price to pay either way. My hunch is that it was her fault, but there is no real way to tell by that article. Could easily be the other way around.
Ouch! Sorry to hear that. The only way I can Imagine this happening is if she fell or was cut off upslope of the cat while going at a pretty fast speed and then was unable to stop herself from sliding into the front of it.