Welcome to another edition of Survival Weekly, where the real wilderness survival “reality show” plays out everyday, in the wild places around our world. These unscripted stories will give you insight to the true threats and challenges you may face in your outdoor pursuits. So sit back, relax, and read on to get a dose of reality to sharpen your most valuable survival tool. – BPO
Bear attack in my district (and my excuse why Survival Weekly got delayed to Bi-weekly while I worked that incident) – http://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2015/06/08/smokies-rangers-plan-euthanize-bear-attacked-boy/28691927/
Great first hand AAR from rescued hiker – http://www.equipped.org/032015survive.htm
Rescue a public service? – http://www.outsideonline.com/1986496/search-and-rescue-public-service-not-exactly
App for SAR planning – http://www.kentonline.co.uk/kent/news/ksar-38065/
Rescue in paradise could cost – http://www.bizjournals.com/pacific/blog/morning_call/2015/06/kauai-considers-making-hikers-who-ignore-warnings.html
Water Safety –
Grand Canyon National Park (AZ)
Search For Missing River Guide Scaled Back
Efforts to find missing river guide Morgan Heimer, 22, have been scaled back following a six-day search that has turned up no clues as to his whereabouts.
Heimer was last seen on Tuesday, June 2nd, at approximately 4 p.m. around Pumpkin Springs along the Colorado River. The initial park response included searching the area where he was last seen by air and an immediate hasty search by rangers. For the past six days, park rangers have conducted an extensive search of about 14 miles of the river and four miles along its shores.
The search will now be scaled back to a continuous but limited mode in which rangers and pilots will continue to look for clues when in the area. Flyers with Heimer’s picture and description remain posted at various South Rim locations, and all launching river trips will briefed on particulars regarding the search.
Little River Canyon National Preserve (AL)
Man Drowns In Johnnie’s Creek
A Piedmont man drowned in Johnnie’s Creek at a local swimming area known as the Mill Hole on May 27th. The Mill Hole is located within the legislative boundaries of Little River Canyon National Preserve, but is on private property.
Cherokee County deputies, Cherokee County EMS, Cherokee County Rescue Squad, and National Park Service rangers responded.
Witnesses told deputies and investigators that Matthew Frost, 22, jumped into the water and appeared to be struggling. He went under and never resurfaced. Two bystanders had just arrived and jumped into the water, located Frost, and pulled him to the rocks. CPR was started once he was removed from the water. Frost was pronounced dead at the hospital by the Cherokee County coroner.
The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office investigated.
Lake Meredith National Recreation Area (TX)
Local Man Drowns In Park Swimming Area
A 21-year-old Amarillo resident died at Spring Canyon just below the Sanford Dam on Wednesday, May 27th.
The Borger Police Department received a 911 call around 11:30 a.m. reporting that a swimmer had gone under and had not surfaced.
Rangers arrived on scene within minutes and had a john boat and two kayaks in the water within 30 minutes of the initial 911 call. Search efforts were accompanied by a grid ground search by NPS firefighters in the Spring Canyon swimming area. The man’s body was found by the Amarillo Police Department’s dive team about an hour later.
River rescue near Great Falls – http://www.kfbb.com/story/29202894/river-rescue-near-great-falls
Helicopter rescue of infant – http://www.northdevonjournal.co.uk/PHOTOS-Dramatic-helicopter-rescue-month-old/story-26626212-detail/story.html
Body of teen recovered – http://www.katu.com/news/local/Search-and-rescue-underway-at-Lewis-River-306423811.html
Badlands National Park (SD)
SAR Team Rescues Injured Danish Visitor
On the evening of Saturday, June 6th, the park’s search and rescue team rescued a 23-year-old visitor from Denmark who’d fallen and sustained injuries to her left leg while hiking on the Notch Trail.
The woman was able to crawl a significant distance and descend to the base of a log and cable ladder, where SAR team members found her. Team members employed a rope system to lower the patient in a litter to waiting ambulance personnel. She was then taken to a hospital in Phillip, South Dakota.
This was the second rescue from the Notch Trail this year. In April, a visitor from Russia was also injured in a fall.
Yellowstone National Park (ID,MT,WY)
Visitor Injured In Encounter With Bison
A 62-year-old Australian man sustained serious but non-life-threatening injuries after an encounter with a bison near Old Faithful Lodge yesterday morning.
According to witness reports, several people were crowding a bison that was lying on the grass near an asphalt path when the man approached it while taking pictures with an electronic notepad. He got to within three to five feet from the bison when it charged him, tossing him into the air several times.
When responding rangers arrived on scene, the bison was approximately 100 yards from the injured man. He was flown to a hospital for treatment.
Bison can sprint three times faster than humans can run and are unpredictable and dangerous. Visitors are advised to always give the animals enough space to avoid crowding the animal.
Great Smoky Mountain National Park – Two Missing Hikers Found in Park
Rangers at Great Smoky Mountains National Park have found a missing woman and her son from Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin who had been reported being lost in the park on Sunday, June 7.
Christy Barns, 40, and her son, Casey, 16, had sent a text message to family members on Sunday evening at 8:38 p.m. stating they were lost and needed help. Rangers were notified and were able to locate the individuals’ vehicle at Clingmans Dome. The ground search was initiated on Monday morning and the pair was soon found in good condition along the Forney Creek trail a little before 2:00 p.m.
The park had mobilized an incident management team and deployed search teams to the trails surrounding Clingmans Dome. The search involved 30 National Park Services employees with 15 of those actively searching in the field. The initial search focused on trails which carried the highest probability of where the pair may have been located.
Great Smoky Mountain National Park – Body of Missing Hiker Found in Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park rangers believe to have discovered the body of reported missing hiker, Jenny Bennett, 62, of Sylva, NC in the Lester Prong area of Greenbrier above campsite 31 on Monday, June 8. It was reported to park officials on Sunday, June 7 that Bennett was missing and possibly in the park. Her vehicle was located at the Porters Flat Trailhead later that evening. An area wide search operation of trained man trackers was underway when she was found by rangers.
Bennett was an avid hiker in the Smoky Mountains and maintained a blog about her trips. She was a member of the Smoky Mountain Hiking Club and often liked to hike off trail in the park. http://www.knoxnews.com/news/local-news/body-of-hiker-found-in-smokies-identified-as-jenny-bennett
Lost & Injured hikers rescued –
Grand Teton National Park (WY)
Injured Climber Rescued From Garnet Canyon
On Tuesday afternoon, rangers conducted a rescue operation via helicopter for an injured climber who fell on a wet rock slab just above the Meadows area of Garnet Canyon in the heart of the Teton Range.
Charlie Emerson, 31, of Marietta, Georgia was solo climbing a fourth class rated rock slab when he slipped and slid approximately 150 to 200 feet before coming to rest in a snowfield at the base of the rock feature. Emerson was not wearing a helmet at the time of his fall.
Two Grand Teton employees conducting a research project in Garnet Canyon witnessed Emerson’s sliding fall and immediately began hiking to his location. These park employees are certified as emergency medical technicians and they were able to effectively assess Emerson and provide emergency medical care until park rangers could arrive by helicopter.
A separate backcountry party also reached Emerson and placed an emergency call for help via cell phone. That call was received by Teton Interagency Dispatch Center at 12:30 p.m. Because wet, snow sloughs were shedding off areas above the accident site, responders carefully moved Emerson to a more secure area out of harm’s way.
Park rangers happened to be conducting early season training at the time at the Teton Interagency Helibase, located at the Jackson Hole Airport. Their preseason training included a Helicopter Express ship that just came under contract with Grand Teton and Bridger-Teton National Forest to support firefighting and search and rescue operations during the coming season.
The helicopter flew from the helibase to the Jenny Lake rescue cache located near the base of the Teton peaks at Lupine Meadows and picked up two rangers for transport to Garnet Canyon. After the ship landed on a snow-covered area near the accident site, the two rangers traversed about 200 yards to reach Emerson and place him in a rescue litter. They carried him back to the helispot and placed him inside the ship for a quick flight to the Jenny Lake rescue cache. Emerson was then transferred into a waiting park ambulance and transported to St. John’s Medical Center in Jackson for further care of his multiple injuries.
Emerson did not receive a head injury, which was lucky given the fact that he was not wearing a helmet and that he was crossing wet and likely slippery rock slabs. While rock features in Garnet Canyon can be easy to ascend, they are often more difficult to descend. As these rock slabs melt out, they can be covered with slippery silt or sand, which makes good traction more challenging.
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