Idaho Falls
clear sky
humidity: 23%
wind: 8mph SSW
H 90 • L 85

‘This is a great loss.’ Well-known snowmobiler killed in avalanche


Share This

IDAHO FALLS — Emergency crews have recovered the body of a Victor man killed in an avalanche near Palisades Friday night.

Robert Kincaid, 46, was riding with approximately 10 riders northeast of the Sheep Creek area when the avalanche was triggered around 5:40 p.m., according to the Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office.

“While one rider went to call for help, others in the party immediately began probing and searching for Kincaid with the assistance of six other riders that arrived to the area,” Sgt. Bryan Lovell said in a news release.

Rescue crews responded to the area Friday night but due to weather and terrain conditions, they were unable to locate Kincaid. They returned Saturday morning and found him after searching for two and a half hours.

“Kincaid was located and despite first aid efforts, could not be resuscitated,” Lovell said. “It was determined that Kincaid was wearing an avalanche beacon but it was not activated at the time of the avalanche. It’s unclear at this time why the beacon was not activated.”

Kincaid is a well-known snowmobiler who has been featured in several publications. A story on Snoriders said he has spent 18 years racing and 20 years riding.

In a Facebook post, SnoWest Magazine paid tribute to Kincaid.

“Rob has a special way with people, and it’s no surprise he has become a household name in our little sport,” the statement reads. “Rob has a gifted way of making people feel like they’re his closest friends from the first handshake. Doesn’t matter if you met him in a dirt field in Minnesota or a parking lot in Idaho, Rob always takes time to visit with anyone. His personality transcends backgrounds and preconceptions.”

Hundreds of Facebook comments have been posted about Kincaid’s death on multiple pages with one person saying his death will be a “great loss to the snowmobiling community.” The rider spoke about his passion for the backcountry in a 2018 video for Arctic Cat.

“The Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office is saddened by this tragedy and the effect it will have on the Kincaid family and their friends,” Lovell says. “We remind those who winter recreate to always be prepared for emergencies, be aware of current conditions before you go, and stay away from avalanche-prone areas that are dangerous for riders and rescue personnel.”