Two weekend rescues in Coquihalla backcountry

Challenging weather for Hope Search and Rescue

Hope Search and Rescue had two calls in the backcountry near the Coquihalla Summit this weekend.

Saturday a lost skier was rescued near Zoa Peak and Sunday an injured snowshoer was brought down from near Flat Iron Needle Peak; search and rescue manager Mario Levesque said weather made both rescues more challenging than usual.

Crews used snowmobiles to locate the stranded skier Saturday. Due to challenging terrain around Zoa Peak they then had to make their way on foot to where the skier had built a shelter.

“They had to come up and down in ravines and in between trees, lots of brushes and stuff. Slow going,” Levesque said.

At 8:00 p.m. Hope Search and Rescue said they could hear the skier and the skier texted stating he could see a searchlight. Seven minutes later, the skier was found.

Sunday searchers were called by the RCMP to an area near Flat Iron Peak along Highway 5, where an injured snowshoer was located.

The team set out around 1 p.m. By the time the individual was located, the weather was worsening and the team had to carry the snowshoer down instead of using a helicopter.

“The weather was not co-operating,” Levesque said. Six search and rescue members bundled up the snowshoer and brought them down, all the while dealing with 10 to 12 centimetres of snow within three hours.

For backcountry enthusiasts, Levesque said it is crucial to check the weather and the avalanche rating. He said they also need to take a pack with water, food, a compass, flashlight with spare batteries, cell phone and a whistle.

A cell phone can be a great locating tool, as long as those going out keep their phone well charged and are within an area which has coverage.

 

Hope Search and Rescue’s new six-passenger utility task vehicle (UTV) can go over snow in the winter and rough terrain in the summers. It has been used in several rescues this winter. (HSAR photo)

Just Posted

Hope Search and Rescue assist in flood response

Evacuation alerts and river monitoring carried out by HSAR together with the District of Hope

Chilliwack prolific offender a no-show for sentencing hearing

Warrant issued on May 17 for Jeffrey Michael Kizmann wanted for robbery

Province has been missing in action on flood protection, experts say

Political will to improve dikes lacking, says B.C.’s former flood safety chief

‘We’re not out of the woods yet’: Hope Mayor on flooding

Gabion diking system installed, residents urged to stay clear of river banks

UPDATED: Pedestrian fatally hit on railway in Agassiz

Police, fire and ambulance responded

Black Press Media to launch Pipeline Full of Controversy series

Series covers Trans Mountain’s history, science, Indigenous reaction, politics and economics

Wildfire northwest of Kamloops jumps to 1,600 hectares overnight

Ground crews and aircraft are responding to an estimated 1,600 hectare wildfire approximately 55 kilometers northwest of Kamloops, near the Deadman Vidette Road.

Former B.C. police chief dies in ATV accident

Ex-Nelson top cop began his career in Vancouver

5 to start your day

The latest on mobility pricing, thieves target a farmer’s market, and more

Referendum in Ireland would repeal strict ban on abortion

Voters throughout Ireland have begun casting votes in a referendum that may lead to a loosening of the country’s strict ban on most abortions.

Lava from Hawaii volcano enters ocean from 3 flows

The Kilauea volcano has been gushing lava on the big island of Hawaii for the past three weeks.

Summit talk turns warmer; Trump says ‘talking to them now’

North Korea issued a statement saying it was still “willing to give the U.S. time and opportunities” to reconsider talks

Harvey Weinstein turns himself in, arraigned on rape, criminal charges

Harvey Weinstein arraigned on rape, criminal sex act charges following allegations of sexual misconduct

Explosion at Mississauga restaurant sends 15 to hospital

Hunt underway for two suspects connected to Mississauga, Ont., blast

Most Read