Education and Communication


Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center (GNFAC) – Montana

Based in Bozeman, Montana, the GNFAC covers an area of approximately 1,720 square-miles, including the Bridger, Gallatin, and Madison Ranges, the Lionhead area near West Yellowstone, and the mountains around Cooke City.

Running the avalanche center involves many individuals, community partnerships, and volunteer efforts. Almost 50% of our funding comes from outside the Forest Service. The Friends of the Avalanche Center along with a grant from Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks fill in the shortfall. Businesses that financially support our work through the Friends include: Grizzly Outfitters, Yellowstone Artic Yamaha, Montana State Parks, Yellowstone Club Community Foundation, Gallatin County Search and Rescue, Highline Partners, Mystery Ranch, World Boards, Spark R&D, Cooke City Super 8, Bridger Bowl, Community Food Coop, Gallatin Valley Snowmobile Association, Stronghold Fabrication, Knoff Group Real Estate, Alpine Orthopedics, Lawson Dental, Werner Wealth Management, MAP Brewing, Morison-Maierle, Swiss Fit, Ph.D Skis and Cooke City Motorsports.

Over the 2018-2019 Winter, the GNFAC put out 129 daily avalanche forecasts. There are over 5,000 Subscribers to this forecast and 1,200 daily views of the forecast website. Social media outreach includes updates to YouTube (111,529 views), Facebook (10,707 Views), Instagram (200,932 views), and Twitter (2,021 views).

2019 season:

  • Total email subscribers to the avalanche forecast: 5,090

  • Number of daily views to GNFAC Forecast page: 1,281

  • Number of Avalanche Warnings issued: 7

  • Additional Avalanche Warnings for the Centennial Range in Idaho: 4

  • Number of videos posted to YouTube and total views: 118 and 111,529

  • Total followers on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter: 10,707 and 9,689 and 2,021

  • Number of Instagram videos posted and views: 75 and 200,932

  • Number of field days: 132

  • Total number of snowpits we recorded on 100

  • Estimated total, in pounds, of snow shoveled digging pits: 200,000

  • Days we worked as “excepted” employees during the government shut-down: 34o The best part of the government shutdown: parking

  • Reported avalanches and incidents: 263 and 63.

  • The most active weekend for avalanches: January 26 & 27 January with 23 avalanches

  • Coldest recorded temperature on our vehicle thermometer: -34F

  • Number of times we had to beat the frozen trailer lock with a wrench to open it: at least 6

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