BRATTLEBORO -- A local woman was airlifted from a snowmobile trail on Sunday afternoon.
Amy Mathiau, 37, of Brattleboro, was traveling on a Vermont Association of Snow Travelers trail located on Kelly Stan Road in Sunderland when she failed to navigate a bend.
"It's speculative to say whether it was speed that caused it or if it was inexperience," said Vermont Game Warden Rich Watkin. "It was a tight turn."
Where the crash occurred, the trail heads west and as it heads down a hill, the trail cornered to the left. The condition of the trail was not a concern among the game wardens who responded to the incident.
Watkin told the Reformer that it was Mathiau's second or third time operating a snowmobile and she was with her boyfriend at the time. The boyfriend told the game wardens that they were traveling pretty slow.
According to Watkin, it was possible that Mathiau hit the accelerator when she intended to hit the brake.
"The sled went up in the trees," he continued. "It didn't go far. Maybe 10 or 15 feet off the trail before it collided with a tree. It looked like the front right ski hooked around a tree then got torn off."
Mathiau was found by her boyfriend behind the sled. He believed she was unconscious but she came to before he left her to find cell service in order to reach emergency responders.
Watkin was among the three game wardens stationed at Stratton Arlington Road, running a snowmobile safety checkpoint. The game wardens were the first ones at the scene.
Wardsboro Fire Chief Chris Liller called in the helicopter to deliver Mathiau to Albany Medical Center. According to a press release from the Vermont State Police, she sustained possible injuries to her head, neck, back and arm.
According to Albany Medical Center, Mathiau was in the intensive care unit on Monday.
The Wardsboro Fire Department was the primary responder while Vermont State Police, Stratton Fire Department and Stratton Mountain Rescue were also at the scene.
"It just highlights the dangers of this recreational activity. While thousands of people are on the trails on the weekends, it just demonstrates there is that potential," said Watkin. "I can't emphasize enough how important it is to ride safely."
Chris Mays can be reached at 802-254-2311, ext. 273, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Chris on Twitter @CMaysReformer.