Tag Archives: mountain biking

Survial Weekly – 9/21/15…


Image: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/north-shore-rescue-seeing-spike-in-calls-during-long-weekend-1.3217415

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

Featured – 

Four days, three nights. Utah man toughs it out – http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2015/09/15/utah-man-brush-lost-woods-survival/72297360/

Video of highlights CSAR program – http://globalnews.ca/news/2205207/inside-the-reality-of-search-and-rescue/

News – 

Tidewater celebrates 30 year anniversary!! – http://wydaily.com/2015/09/15/local-news-tidewater-search-and-rescue/

CAP cell phone forensics team receives award – http://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com/story/news/2015/09/04/cap-saves-lives-search-rescue-missions-earns-commanders-award/71724894/

Water Safety – 

Missing kayaker found – http://calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/fire-crews-searching-for-missing-kayaker-on-reservoir

Body of kayaker recovered – http://www.islandecho.co.uk/news/search-and-rescue-operation-underway-in-sandown-bay

Man overboard – http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/search-rescue-shediac-bay-1.3222109

Coast Guard searches for boater – http://abc7news.com/news/coast-guard-searches-for-sf-man-reported-missing-from-angel-island/973499/

Water SAR – http://www.local10.com/news/rescue-crews-search-pompano-beachs-intercoastal-waterway/35377306

Catalina SAR for boater – http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-catalina-boat-crash-search-20150907-story.html


Image: https://www.kelownanow.com/watercooler/news/news/South_Okanagan/15/09/02/Multiple_Search_Teams_Help_Rescue_Three_Men_from_Manning_Park

Hiking – 

Lost & Injured hikers rescued –

Hunter-gatherer – 

Missing hunter – http://www.newsminer.com/news/local_news/search-continues-for-fairbanks-man-missing-from-hunting-camp/article_810cb02e-5d9a-11e5-8a67-bbfd0fa03cc1.html

Body of missing hunter recovered – http://www.steamboattoday.com/news/2015/sep/11/body-missing-hunter-located/

Gold miners rescued – http://www.mynews4.com/news/local/story/WATCH-VIDEO-CHP-rescues-gold-miners-near-Lake/35Ot_wCDr0GS_u8KU5fA4A.cspx


Image: https://www.kelownanow.com/watercooler/news/news/South_Okanagan/15/09/02/Multiple_Search_Teams_Help_Rescue_Three_Men_from_Manning_Park

Climbing – 

Climbing accident – http://trib.com/news/state-and-regional/rangers-rescue-man-who-fell-feet-off-middle-teton/article_5ca1875a-fa19-5686-a305-04180a7ecb9f.html

Vehicles – 

 Driver survives wreck in remote area for a week – http://m.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11511656

PLB signals rescue of motorcyclist – http://www.perthnow.com.au/news/western-australia/distress-beacon-saves-injured-motorbiker-in-remote-goldfields-rescue/story-fnhocxo3-1227533290216

SAR initiated for stranded motorists – http://infotel.ca/newsitem/search-and-rescue-called-out-for-two-people-lost-south-of-kamloops/it23161

Injured mountain biker rescued – http://www.castanet.net/news/West-Kelowna/147299/Smith-Creek-rescue

Small plane crash kills five – http://www.durangoherald.com/article/20150907/NEWS01/150909699/-1/s/5-die-in-plane-crash-near-Cascade-Creek-

Interested in learning skills to handle emergencies like the ones you read in Survival Weekly?  Check out BigPig Outdoors Survival 101 class  – http://www.bigpigoutdoors.net/survival-101-1.htm or S.O.S. Class http://www.bigpigoutdoors.net/skills-of-survival.html


Image: http://lompocrecord.com/news/local/sb-county-men-assist-with-rescue-in-sierra-national-forest/article_8a879233-f4cc-5bef-9488-28ff1ae9950f.html

Survival Weekly – 6/30/15…


Image: http://www.estesparknews.com/rmnp_news/article_3e7dc20a-1ea4-11e5-bd88-8f9cdaddb8cc.html

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

Featured – 

30 minute hike leads to six day ordeal (thanks Mike for the link) – http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/national/Ontario+couple+walk+backcountry+surprisingly+good/11175703/story.html

News – 

Utah launches SAR card – http://www.parkrecord.com/summit_county-news/ci_28409494/search-and-rescue-card-program-launching-next-week

Nothing funny about prank calls to emergency services – http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/police-hunt-hoax-999-caller-5974015

Malfunctioning cell phone launches SAR – http://www.adn.com/article/20150626/malfunctioning-cellphone-sends-texts-help-ast-launches-helicopter

Inside the CAP – http://www.koaa.com/story/29425094/behind-the-scenes-and-in-the-sky-with-civil-air-patrol

Water Safety – 

Buffalo National River – AR
Swimmer Drowns In High Waters Of Buffalo River

Dispatch received a report on the evening of June 18th advising that a 22-year-old man had disappeared while swimming in the Buffalo River, which was near flood stage at the time of the incident.  The reporting party advised that the man and two companions swam across the river at Grinders Ferry; on their return swim, the victim began struggling, slipped beneath the surface of the river, and disappeared.

Hasty search operations were begun immediately via land and boat and continued until slightly after dark.  Search operations continued the following morning at first light, with efforts focusing on side-scanning, sonar-mounted motorboat operations.  Additional sonar operations continued on Saturday and Sunday, and dive operations were begun on Sunday.

On Monday morning, as dive teams were preparing to enter the water for the second day, District Ranger Mark Miller and Firefighter Tim Baron were making a motorboat sweep patrol to Gilbert when they located the body of the missing swimmer about two miles downstream from Grinders Ferry.  The body had been deposited by the river in a shallow depression on a sandbar about five vertical feet above the water line.

A recovery and investigation team was immediately deployed to that location to recover the body, which was transferred to the Searcy County coroner upon arriving back at Grinders Ferry.  The search and rescue mission utilized a unified command team comprised of the National Park Service and Searcy County Sheriff’s Office. Additional resources came from Mennonite Disaster Services Search and Rescue (Carroll County SAR), the American Red Cross, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Dive Team, Arkansas G&F wildlife officers, Benton County Dive Team, Searcy County Dive Team, BUFFSAR volunteers and numerous park staff.

Dinosaur National Monument
Searchers Recover Body Of Missing Rafter

The body of a missing rafter has been recovered by search and rescue staff from Dinosaur National Monument, Moffat County Sheriff’s Office, and Colorado Parks and Wildlife near Triplet Falls on the Green River in Dinosaur National Monument. Based on interviews with members of the river group, the following is a summary of the event.

A 16-member private river trip ran Triplet Falls on Saturday, June 20th. After running the rapid, four members of the party hiked back upstream to run a section of the rapid known as the “Birth Canal” with a nine-foot paddle raft. The group made it through the “Birth Canal”, but hit a rock shortly below, and the raft flipped, dumping all four occupants into the river.

The paddle raft was flushed down river and recovered by other members of the group. Three of the rafters were able to swim to shore. The fourth occupant of the paddle raft, a 34-year-old man from Denver, Colorado, was briefly spotted in the water below the “Birth Canal” before he disappeared. Members of the group reported that he appeared to be stuck. The rafting party observed that his personal flotation device (PFD) and one shoe popped to the surface where he was last seen.

Members of the group searched for the missing rafter for approximately one to two hours. They then continued downstream on their rafts to seek assistance. They stopped for the night at Rippling Brook campsite as it was getting dark and did not want to risk rowing in the darkness.

On Sunday, the group arrived at the Echo Park Ranger Station at approximately 11:15 am where they notified a ranger of the incident. Monument staff contacted Moffat County Sheriff’s Office and Colorado Parks and Wildlife to assemble a response team.

The interagency response team under a unified command left Gates of Lodore by boat to Triplet Falls on Sunday evening. The group arrived at Triplet Falls to begin water-based search and recovery efforts on Monday. The victim was located at approximately 12:30 pm. His body was transported to Echo Park by raft.

Triplet Falls, which has a Class III difficulty rating, is located in a remote portion of Dinosaur National Monument about 12 river miles from the monument’s northern boundary. The area is surrounded by steep canyon walls rising 1,200 feet and higher above the river. There is no cell service in that portion of the monument. River flow was approximately 1,670 cubic feet per second (cfs) at the time of the incident.

SAR for cliff jumper – http://www.kob.com/article/stories/s3837376.shtml

SAR for missing kayaker – http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/local/Search-Underway-for-Missing-Boater-in-Fort-Worth-310343061.html

Hiking – 

Lake Mead National Recreation Area – NV, AZ
Two Rescued From Mine Blocked By Rattlesnake

A man and a boy who entered Ore Car Mine off North Shore Road last Friday were unable to exit due to a rattlesnake blocking their path and called for help.

Rangers responded along with personnel from BLM, Henderson FD and Las Vegas Metro PD SAR. The pair were successfully extricated.

Hiker with heatstroke rescued http://www.kelownanow.com/watercooler/news/news/South_Okanagan/15/06/29/Penticton_Search_and_Rescue_Respond_to_Hiker_with_Heat_Stroke

Lightning strike injures fifteen hikers – http://kdvr.com/2015/06/28/lightning-strike-injures-up-to-16-kills-dog-on-mount-bierstadt/

Lost & Injured hikers rescues –


Image: http://www.kelownanow.com/watercooler/news/news/South_Okanagan/15/06/29/Penticton_Search_and_Rescue_Respond_to_Hiker_with_Heat_Stroke

Hunter-gatherer – 

Missing hunter’s gear found – http://www.greatfallstribune.com/story/news/2015/06/29/items-belonging-missing-hunter-found-mountains/29487819/

Climbing – 

New River Gorge National River (WV)
Rangers Conduct Two Same-Day Rescues

Rangers were advised of a falling accident at Beauty Mountain on Tuesday morning. The interagency response team consisted of rangers, VFD members, and local EMS. Due to the nature of the call, an aeromedical helicopter from Air Evac launched and staged at Burnwood Ranger Station.

Rescuers quickly established contact with the injured man, began caring for him, and planned his evacuation. The Fayette County Rope Rescue Team and rangers rigged a technical rope rescue system and brought him to the cliff top via a litter raise. He was carried out to an ambulance and was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The preliminary investigation indicates that he fell from the cliff while down climbing without a rope or climbing gear in order to retrieve his cell phone, which he’d dropped over the cliff the previous evening.

Late that afternoon, the 911 center advised rangers that a woman had gone over Sandstone Falls on the New River.  Park staff responded to the Sandstone Falls visitor use area, while additional rangers responded to Sandstone landing with an NPS patrol boat. The woman and two male friends were spotted on a rock below the falls, and the NPS patrol boat was guided to the location. All three were transported to the shore and evaluated for injuries. The woman suffered minor head injuries, but refused treatment; she was transported to a hospital for follow-up by her friends. Hinton VFD and WV Department of Natural Resources officers assisted with the rescue.

Vehicles – 

 Lake Mead National Recreation Area – NV, AZ
Plane Makes Emergency Landing On Park Beach

The pilot of a small plane carrying three passengers made an emergency landing near Lake Mead yesterday with only minor injuries to the occupants.

Just after 5 a.m., park dispatch received a call reporting that a small aircraft had landed at Special Events Beach along Boulder Beach. Rangers and personnel from the Clark County Fire Department, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Search and Rescue, the Federal Aviation Administration, and Community Ambulance responded.

The pilot was flying his three passengers from North Las Vegas to El Paso. The three women, all from the El Paso area, were visiting Las Vegas for the weekend. Two were treated for minor injuries, but none of them were taken to the hospital.

According to the passengers, the plane’s engine stopped running over the mountains along the eastern side of the Boulder Basin. The passengers said the pilot circled back toward Boulder City to avoid landing in the mountains or on the water. They said the plane glided to a landing on Boulder Beach.

The aircraft, a 1979 Piper PA-32R-301 (also known as a Cherokee 6), landed on the beach between two portable restrooms. No facilities were damaged, and it doesn’t appear that there are any fuel leaks from the aircraft.

A portion of Special Events Beach will remain temporarily closed until the aircraft can safely be removed and the investigation by the FAA, National Transportation Safety Board and the park can be completed.

Injured horse rider rescued – http://county10.com/2015/06/29/horse-accident-leads-to-search-and-rescue-on-whiskey-mountain/

Injured biker rescued – http://www.estesparknews.com/rmnp_news/article_3e7dc20a-1ea4-11e5-bd88-8f9cdaddb8cc.html

SAR for missing vessel called off – http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2015/06/29/islands-focus-aceh-search-and-rescue-ends-8-still-missing.html

Tourist plane crashes in Alaska – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/25/alaska-plane-crash_n_7667966.html

Interested in learning skills to handle emergencies like the ones you read in Survival Weekly?  Check out BigPig Outdoors Survival 101 class  – http://www.bigpigoutdoors.net/survival-101-1.htm

injured biker

Image: http://www.estesparknews.com/rmnp_news/article_3e7dc20a-1ea4-11e5-bd88-8f9cdaddb8cc.html

Survival Weekly – 1/7/2015…


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

Featured – 

7 year old survives plane crash – http://www.cnn.com/2015/01/02/us/kentucky-plane-crash/

News – 

First person account of getting rescued – http://www.xojane.com/it-happened-to-me/lost-in-the-mountains-of-north-carolina

Winter Sports – 

Mount Rainier National Park (WA)
Search For Missing Snowshoer Comes To Tragic Conclusion

The search for a 37-year-old local man who was overdue from a snowshoeing trip in the park came to a tragic conclusion on December 29th when ground crews located his body next to Edith Creek in the Paradise area, not far from the point last seen.

The man went missing on the evening of December 27th during a winter storm that dropped 20 inches of snow in 48 hours. He intended to overnight at Camp Muir, but only made it as far as Panorama Point due to formidable winter storm conditions.

A party of two waiting out the storm at Panorama Point took him into their shelter, but when the shelter was destroyed by the extreme conditions they attempted to complete their descent to Paradise together. During the descent, the man became separated from his companions in the vicinity of Edith Creek.

A hasty search was conducted on December 28th, with members of the Nordic Patrol scouring main routes in the area. Operations expanded on December 29th to include air and ground searches from Edith Creek to the upper Stevens Canyon drainage.

Members of Tacoma, Everett, Seattle, and Olympic Mountain Rescues participated in the ground search. A Chinook from the US Army Reserve’s 214th Air Division, Joint Base Lewis McChord, with park climbing rangers aboard searched by air. Approximately 30 NPS and partner personnel were assigned to the incident. David Keltner was incident commander.

Hiking – 

Search suspended for missing hiker – http://www.thenewstribune.com/2014/12/29/3562638/search-for-olympic-national-park.html

FLETC classmate Hinchy to the rescue!! – http://www.nbc29.com/story/27749624/park-rangers-rescue-hiker-near-old-rag-mt#.VKeo0v6pomo.facebook

Tracks of missing hiker found – http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11382483

Hikers rescued – http://poststar.com/news/local/adirondack-forest-ranger-search-and-rescue-highlights-dec–/article_96ac1a74-94ef-11e4-9dd5-5b54d5d746e2.html

Leave a location in your trip plan – http://www.kelownanow.com/watercooler/news/news/Provincial/15/01/05/Search_and_Rescue_Called_in_to_Look_for_Missing_Vancouver_Man


Hunter-gatherer – 

Missing hunter found – http://www.scsun-news.com/silver_city-news/ci_27262788

Fishermen rescued – http://www.news-mail.com.au/news/chopper-search-and-rescue-mission-near-baffle-cree/2500109/

Climbing – 

Climber rescued – http://www.havasunews.com/news/mohave-county-search-and-rescue-volunteers-help-man-stuck-on/article_49168308-904e-11e4-8b11-b727d75687bd.html

Water Safety – 

Two bodies recoovered in boating fatality – http://www.wctv.tv/home/headlines/Emergency-Crews-Conducting-Search-and-Rescue-on-Lake-Talquin-287421731.html

Dive team recovers drowning victim – http://www.wfla.com/story/27764635/pasco-dive-team-member-reflects-on-search-and-rescue-efforts

Vehicles – 

Missing mountain bikers found – http://www.hometownstation.com/santa-clarita-news/lost-santa-clarita-valley-hikers-found-by-search-and-rescue-117468

Helicopter diverted from plane crash search to water rescue – http://www.voxy.co.nz/national/search-and-rescue-teams-kept-busy-near-ruakaka/5/211241

Urban – 

Search continues for missing woman – http://www.chillicothegazette.com/story/news/crime/2014/12/30/search-resumes-missing-woman/21051643/

Interested in learning skills to handle emergencies like the ones you read in Survival Weekly?   Check out BigPig Outdoors Survival 101 class  – http://www.bigpigoutdoors.net/survival-101-1.html

rescue (2)

Survival Weekly – 11/18/14…


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

Featured – 

Good expose on SAR in Iceland – http://roadsandkingdoms.com/2014/rescued-from-the-land-of-fire-and-ice/

News – 

“Hike Safe” cards coming to New Hampshire – http://www.actionhub.com/stories/2014/11/17/hike-safe-cards-coming-new-hampshire/

Hiking – 

Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks (CA)
Overdue Backpacker Found In Good Condition

On the afternoon of Wednesday, November 6th, overdue hiker William Roberts was located outside Kings Canyon National Park in the adjacent Sierra National Forest. Searchers found the 62-year-old Virginia man in good condition in Crown Valley.

On October 30th, Roberts departed alone from the Rancheria Trailhead on the Sierra National Forest. He planned to hike to Tehipite Dome in Kings Canyon National Park, then, after several days in Tehipite Valley, return to the Rancherita Trailhead by November 3rd.  Dispatch was notified that he was overdue on the morning of November 5th.

Sixteen National Park Service and twenty Fresno County Sheriff’s Office search and rescue personnel were involved in searching by ground and helicopter, conducting interviews, and planning search operations. An NPS helicopter, Fresno County Sheriff’s Office helicopter Eagle One, and California Highway Patrol’s helicopter H40 also assisted.

The search area, located approximately 35 miles southeast of Huntington Lake, ranged from elevations of 4,000 to 9,000 feet. The first significant storm of the season passed through the area on October 31st and November 1st, resulting in 12 to 18 inches of snowfall at higher elevations and heavy rain at lower elevations.

Two hikers rescued from canyon –  http://www.stgeorgeutah.com/news/archive/2014/11/15/ccj-sar-team-rescues-2-hikers-from-snow-canyon-state-park/#.VGq4r_lpf58

Stranded hikers rescued – http://www.albanytribune.com/17112014-sheriffs-office-search-rescue-saves-two-stranded-hikers/

Teams battle extreme weather is search for missing hiker – http://denver.cbslocal.com/2014/11/18/search-for-missing-man-in-rmnp-hindered-by-extreme-weather-conditions/

Hunter-gatherer – 

Missing hunter rescued – http://www.3news.co.nz/nznews/search-and-rescue-retrieve-hunter-from-kaimai-range-2014111811

Climbing – 

New River Gorge National River (WV)
Rangers Rescue Injured Climber

A rock climber from Ohio was climbing the New River Gunks route in the Junkyard area, a 5.7 sport route supported by a top bolt, when he lost his grip, fell from 12 to 14 feet, landed in the sitting position, then fell backwards and hit his head.

Fellow climbers reported that the injured man used an old cam device someone had left on the route. No one knew where the old device came from or how long it had been there. The climber clipped into the device about ten feet above the ground and continued to climb up the route. He then lost his grip and fell. The cable attached to the device broke and failed to arrest his fall.

Rangers, an ambulance crew, and local first responders were dispatched to the accident after fellow climbers called it into the Fayette County 911 center. Rangers determined that the man had a possible broken wrist, back injury, and a minor head injury. He was not wearing a helmet.

Rangers, climbers, and first responders carried him out in a litter. Two low angle belays were set to support the team as they carried him out the steep trail to a waiting ambulance. He was transported to Raleigh General Hospital for further evaluation and treatment.

Friends and family mourn loss of Bend climber – http://www.ktvz.com/news/storm-stymies-search-for-fallen-middle-sister-climber/29708126

Runaway teen rescued off cliff – http://www.hoodrivernews.com/news/2014/nov/15/team-works-together-runaway-cliffhanger/

Water Safety –

Airman swept out to sea – http://sfbay.ca/2014/11/12/elite-search-and-rescue-airman-swept-off-beach/

Body recovered at Lake Mead – http://www.jrn.com/ktnv/news/282821401.html

Vehicles – 

Search for missing Cessna – http://www.cfra.com/news/2014/11/12/search-and-rescue-operation-underway-for-missing-cessna-near-haliburton

Another missing Cessna – http://www.kvoa.com/news/search-and-rescue-for-two-people-on-plane-continues/

Lost mountain biker rescued – http://www.oc-breeze.com/2014/11/14/62078_ocsd-search-and-rescue-finds-lost-mountain-biker/

Stranded drivers rescued – http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/2014/11/18/marion-county-search-and-rescue-locate-vehicle-stuck-in-snow/19242253/

Urban – 

Search underway for elderly man – http://www.orovillemr.com/general-news/20141116/search-and-rescue-crews-look-for-missing-magalia-man

Interested in learn skills to handle emergencies like the ones you read in Survival Weekly? Check out BigPig Outdoors Survival 101 class  – http://www.bigpigoutdoors.net/survival-101-1.html


Survival Weekly – 10/20/14…


Featured – 

This is textbook “Survival 101” material. Family gets lost and forced to spend night out in frigid conditions – http://www.wbir.com/story/news/local/2014/10/19/rangers-help-lost-family-off-mt-leconte/17551633/

and click here if you want to prepare for the same  – http://www.bigpigoutdoors.net/survival-101-1.html

News – 

Three rescue divers receive advanced training in my home county. Congrats Brian!! –   http://www.thedailytimes.com/news/three-blount-rescue-divers-receive-advanced-certification/article_5c67c219-3d2b-5b8c-897b-f4380d3f0973.html

Hiking – 

Teen hiker falls to death – http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/58533131-78/amp-canyon-cottonwood-hoyal.html.csp

Ongoing rescue for hikers stranded in avalanche – http://www.ctvnews.ca/world/nepal-avalanche-survivors-could-wait-days-for-rescue-on-isolated-mountains-1.2054428

Hunter/Gatherer – 

Missing hunter found – http://www.idahostatesman.com/2014/10/16/3431585/missing-boise-hunter-found-alive.html?sp=/99/101/

Search continues for missing fisherman – http://www.3news.co.nz/nznews/search-resumes-for-second-missing-fisherman-2014101606

Teen hunter survives the night with survival kit – http://www.9news.com/story/news/local/2014/10/20/lost-teen-wilderness/17604079/

Climbing – 

Zion National Park (UT)
Rangers Conduct Two Simultaneous Rescues

Over a span of ten minutes on the afternoon of October 10th, the park received reports of two visitors requiring evacuation by means of technical rope rescues from two separate locations.

A 35-year-old canyoneer in Pine Creek Canyon had jumped five feet into a pool of water.  He thought that the pool was deep enough to cushion his landing, but landed on a ledge hidden just below the surface.  He broke his fibula and was unable to bear any weight on his injured leg.

Ranger/Medic Matthew Chuvarsky rappelled through the canyoneering route to the man’s location.  The Canyon Overlook Trail follows the rim of Pine Creek Canyon; rangers set up a lowering system to lower a litter and attendant from the trail to the man’s location, then raised him and two attendants 350 feet back to the trail.

The second injury occurred in Hidden Canyon, where a 51-year-old woman jumped a short distance while she was down climbing an obstacle. She also suffered from a broken fibula.

Evacuation of a victim from Hidden Canyon requires the construction of a 400-foot-high line to bypass a section of the trail carved into a cliff face. Ranger/Medic Matthew McCarthy hiked to the woman’s location and explained the challenges of a litter evacuation to her. She decided to attempt to hobble out of the canyon with assistance from crutches and rangers and was able to complete the task.  A litter team met her just past the cliff face and carried her to the trailhead.

Twenty-five SAR team members assisted during the two incidents.  Jumping, as opposed to using a rope or down climbing, is the leading cause of preventable injuries in the Zion Wilderness.

Woman rescued after fall from cliff – http://www.vocm.com/newsarticle.asp?mn=2&ID=50127

Water Safety – 

Vehicles – 

Injured mountain biker rescued – http://www.bakersfieldcalifornian.com/local/x782601564/Mountain-biker-rescued-after-crash-near-Kernville

Injured cyclist rescued – http://www.todmordennews.co.uk/news/local/team-carry-out-mission-to-rescue-cyclist-1-6901998

Urban – 

Woman rescued from chimney – http://twitchy.com/2014/10/19/woman-rescued-from-a-chimney-in-california-sleigh-eight-tiny-reindeer-still-at-large-photos/

Missing dementia sufferer rescued – https://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/fp/news/islands/inner-hebrides/374865/missing-man-found-after-night-in-the-wild/

Survival Weekly – 9/8/14…


Featured –

Because deer season is right around the corner – http://wthitv.com/2014/08/28/conservation-officers-find-man-almost-24-hours-after-tree-stand-accident/

Hunter/Gatherer – 

Bear chases bow hunter up tree and bites his leg – http://www.wsoctv.com/ap/ap/strange/bear-chases-bow-hunter-up-tree-bites-his-leg/nhGzp/?ecmp=wsoctv_social_facebook_2014_sfp

Body of boy recovered from fishing accident –  http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2014/09/01/reports-crews-searching-great-miami-for-boy/14935449/

Father drowns on fishing trip – http://www.toledoblade.com/Police-Fire/2014/09/07/Man-attempting-rescue-missing.html

Hiking – 

Yosemite National Park (CA)
Visitors Evacuated By Helicopter Due To Fire

A wildfire that started early yesterday afternoon east of Half Dome quickly grew to 700 acres and forced the helicopter evacuation of about 100 hikers from the top of Half Dome, Little Yosemite Valley and surrounding trails.  

There were no reported injuries or structures affected by the wildfire.  The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Throughout the afternoon, seven helicopters, an airplane, and ground crews worked to extinguish the fire. The area, which is at an elevation of about 7,000 feet, features rugged terrain.  Ground access requires a several mile hike to the area affected by the fire. 

Yosemite National Park firefighters are working with fire crews from Cal Fire, Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks, Mariposa County Fire, California Highway Patrol, and U.S. Forest Service.  There are over 100 firefighters dedicated to the fire, with more resources en route. 

Yosemite National Park remains open and all facilities within Yosemite Valley.  Trails near the Half Dome area, the Little Yosemite Valley area (a backcountry camping area near Half Dome), Merced Lake and Sunrise High Sierra Camps, Clouds Rest, and Echo Valley remain closed due to fire activity.  All roads leading into Yosemite remain open as well. 

Visitors are urged to check the park’s website to get updated information in the smoke impacts to Yosemite National Park.  Updated information can be found at www.nps.gov/yose

Olympic National Park (WA)
Search Underway For Missing Backpacker

A search was begun late Saturday for Kelly Hall, a 64-year old Bainbridge Island man who was two days overdue from an intended six-day, 39-mile hike in the northeast corner of of the park. 

Hall began his hike on Saturday, August 30th, setting out from the Obstruction Point Trailhead near Hurricane Ridge.  Family members expected to meet him at the USFS Slab Camp Trailhead last Thursday afternoon.  He was reported overdue on Thursday evening.

Hall’s planned itinerary was to hike through Grand Valley to Grand Pass, then continue over Cameron Pass, pass through Dose Meadows to Gray Wolf Pass, and follow the Gray Wolf Trail into the Buckhorn Wilderness in Olympic National Forest. 

Hall is described as being 6’5” tall and weighing 220 pounds. He’s carrying a blue backpack and wearing a blue Mountain Hardware stocking cap. He’s believed to be carrying a blue-gray tent and to have orange flip flops and a fishing pole tied to his pack. Anyone who’s seen him or knows something about his possible whereabouts is asked to call the park at at 360-565-3120.

As of late yesterday, there were 16 searchers in the field, including National Park Service employees and volunteers, plus volunteers from Olympic Mountain Rescue, Clallam County Search and Rescue, and German Shepherd Search Dogs. 

Lake Clark National Park & Preserve (AK)
Four Hikers Rescued From Copper Mountain

On the evening of Sunday, August 31st, four hikers were rescued from Copper Mountain in Lake Clark National Park and Preserve.  Three of the hikers were off-duty Lake Clark employees.

The National Park Service’s Alaska Region Communication Center received a distress call from a park radio around 7:30 p.m., reporting that a seasonal maintenance employee in the group had sustained a life-threatening injury in a fall.  Members of the party provided first aid, but they were unable to move him due to  unstable terrain.

National Park Service personnel and Alaska state troopers in Port Alsworth worked with the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center to rescue the hikers. The Air National Guard responded with an HC-130 aircraft and an HH-60 helicopter with pararescue jumpers. 

During the hoisting operation, another seasonal maintenance employee for Lake Clark, who was on furlough from the Grand Canyon, sustained a significant head injury as a result of falling rock debris.  

All four hikers were brought aboard the helicopter and flown to Anchorage.  The two injured men are currently receiving treatment at Providence Alaska Medical Center.  


Injured hiker rescued – http://blogs.seattletimes.com/today/2014/09/rescue-underway-for-injured-hiker-near-mount-pugh/

Missing couple rescued – http://www.kpax.com/news/missing-couple-in-bighorn-national-forest-found-alive/


Climbing – 

Body of climber missing for weeks – http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/body-of-missing-blodgett-canyon-hiker-located/27927548

Climbers rescued – http://www.cfjctv.com/story.php?id=21045

More climbers rescued – http://www.wkyt.com/home/headlines/Rock-climbers-rescued-in-Wolfe-County-after-rain-floods-creek-274275681.html

Watersports – 

Search for missing swimmer – http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/rescue-crews-continue-search-for-missing-msu-student/27830804

Another search for a missing swimmer – http://www.havasunews.com/news/search-operation-on-lake-havasu-lasts-much-of-labor-day/article_c6939a0a-3257-11e4-acda-0019bb2963f4.html

Kayaker rescued from Lake Michigan –  http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2014/09/kayak_trip_across_lake_michiga_2.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+michigan-news+(Michigan+News%2C+Updates%2C+Photos%2C+Videos+and+Opinions+-+MLive.com)

Missing boater found – http://abc7chicago.com/news/man-missing-for-20-hours-on-lake-michigan-rescued/297441/

Alcohol and boating lead to body recovery – http://www.thewesternnews.com/news/man-s-body-recovered-from-middle-thompson-lake/article_b57f7eec-354e-11e4-b015-0019bb2963f4.html

Foot entrapmment of 9 year old boy – http://magicvalley.com/news/local/breaking-news-update-boy-rescued-from-pillar-falls-after-accident/article_2de6604e-361c-11e4-a359-001a4bcf887a.html

Vehicles – 

Stranded dirt biker rescued – http://www.good4utah.com/story/d/story/search-and-rescue-crews-looking-for-missing-dirt-b/25290/Yrnj2l3xrEKDKL3EZC3gwA

Horseback rider rescued – http://www.svherald.com/content/derek-jordan/2014/09/02/388731

Injured mountain biker rescued – http://www.kbzk.com/news/mountain-biker-rescued-near-triple-tree/

Small plane crash due to loss of cabin pressure –  http://www.cbsnews.com/news/unresponsive-u-s-plane-crashes-off-jamaica-official-says/

Survival Weekly – 7/1/14


I was recently asked to develop a short wilderness survival course for emergency responders, so I think it is fitting to highlight that even experienced hikers and rescuers run into trouble on occasion and can have fatal results. Trauma, from falls, and hypothermia do not care how many years experience you have and the following three stories are a sober reminder of that. Take note that several rescuers were injured in the search for Mike Herdman as well.

Mount Rainier National Park (WA)
Search For Noted Outdoor Writer Ends Tragically

A three-day search for 70-year-old missing day hiker Karen Sykes came to a tragic conclusion on June 21st when her body was found near the east branch of Boundary Creek in rough, steep terrain.

Sykes was hiking the Owyhigh Trail with a partner when they parted with the intention of meeting back at that location in an hour. She went ahead when the party of two encountered snow at approximately 4500 to 5000 feet. Her partner stayed at the location last seen, as arranged, to wait for her return. When she failed to return to the point last seen and eventually to the trailhead, her partner called in an overdue hiker report. At this time, Sykes’ route of travel after leaving the point last seen is undetermined.

Sykes was a locally well-known outdoor journalist and marathon runner and was considered a knowledgeable, experienced hiker. She was prepared for a day hike of the area and had previous hiking experience on the Owyhigh Trail. Examination revealed that she died of hypothermia.

A total of 110 people were assigned to the search over the course of the incident, including personnel from North Cascades, Olympic, and Mount Rainier national parks, German Shepherd Search and Rescue of Washington State, Kittatas County dog teams, King County Explorers, and Everett, Olympic, Central, and Seattle Mountain Rescues. An MD-530 helicopter from Northwest Helicopters in Olympia, Washington, provided air support.


Body of missing firefighter found & cause of death – 

SAR volunteer and hiker die in fall – http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2014/06/30/Volunteer-rescue-worker-dies-trying-to-reach-body-of-hiker-at-Washington-waterfall/7051404132555/


Buffalo National Scenic River (AR)
Snakebite Victim Evacuated From Backcountry – “Odie” to the rescue

The Searcy County Sheriff’s Office contacted the park just before midnight on Friday, June 20th, and advised that they’d received a cell phone call from a member of a group on the river who reported that one of their party had been bitten by a snake and was in severe distress.

Rangers telephoned the callback number and spoke with the reporting party, who said that the man who’d been bitten was suffering from bad trembling, nausea, significant swelling of his entire foot and lower leg, complete inability to bear weight, and pain that was “a 15 on a 10 scale.” 

Rangers narrowed down the patient’s location from the caller’s description of landmarks, but they were able to pinpoint it after the caller sent a map ping locator via text messaging.  The incident commander conducted a quick SPE risk assessment for a canoe-based rescue and determined that the risk level was between “slight and possible.” 

Given the alternative of forcing the patient to wait seven or eight hours in severe distress for a daylight rescue, rescuers opted for a nighttime mission.  Three rangers, including field trainee Jonathan Jackson, launched canoes and paddled by headlamp under a moonless sky two miles to the victim’s campsite. 

Ranger/Paramedic Matt Graden and District Ranger/Parkmedic Kevin Moses stabilized the man, loaded him into a canoe in the most comfortable position they were able to fashion, and continued paddling downstream another seven river miles (during which time they floated within two feet of a swimming copperhead) to the next available takeout, where they transferred the man to a waiting ALS ambulance at 4:30 a.m. 

The man reported that he’d been unable to identify the species of snake, but odds are good that it was either a cottonmouth or copperhead, both of which are common on the Buffalo.  Alcohol may have been a factor, as the patient reported having consumed “about twelve beers, several tequila shots, a rum/vodka mixture, and some whiskey” prior to receiving the bite. 

District Ranger Kevin Moses served as incident commander.

Yosemite National Park (CA)
Injured Climber Rescued From Sentinel Rock

On Tuesday, June 17th, dispatch received a 911 call from an injured rock climber at the base of the Chounard-Herbert climbing route on Sentinel Rock in Yosemite Valley. The climber, a 30-year-old man from Bend, Oregon, said that he’d taken a 35-foot fall on the first pitch of the route, that he’d suffered injuries to his lower extremities, and that he was unable to self-rescue.

A ground response team consisting of Yosemite Search and Rescue team members Everett Phillips, Matt Othmer, Ken Kreis, and Buck Yedor was dispatched to the scene. The park’s contract helicopter was also ordered for a reconnaissance flight and potential short haul mission.  

Following a reconnaissance flight, the helicopter lowered rangers Jack Hoeflich and David Pope and their extrication equipment via short haul to a ledge approximately 250 feet below the injured climber. Hoeflich climbed to the man and fixed ropes for Pope and additional ground responders.

The team, including Hoeflich, Pope and SAR personnel, packaged the injured man in a litter and lowered him with Pope back to the insertion ledge.  The helicopter returned and short-hauled Pope and the man to the Ahwahnee Meadow in Yosemite Valley, where he was taken to  Yosemite Valley Medical Clinic. The remaining team members descended to the valley via the climber’s approach.

The mission was complicated by the steepness of the north face of Sentinel Rock, gusty winds, high rockfall potential, and the relative position of the sun and cliff face, which caused the helicopter to be in direct sunlight while the short haulers were in the shadow of the cliff.

Ranger David Hahn was the incident commander for this rescue.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore (NC)
Visitor Dies In Collapsed Sand Tunnel

On the afternoon of Monday June 23rd, rangers responded to a report of a man entrapped in sand on the beach north of Ramp 27. Also responding were Chicamacomico Banks Volunteer Fire Department and Dare County EMS personnel and Dare County Sheriff’s Office deputies

The victim, a 49-year-old man, became buried when a sand tunnel that connected two large holes dug into the beach collapsed on him, covering him in five to six feet of sand.  EMS and rescue personnel arrived on scene as the man was being pulled from the sand by family, friends and bystanders. 

Resuscitation efforts began immediately. The man had been buried for approximately ten minutes prior to resuscitation efforts. Attempts to revive him were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead at the scene.


Niobrara National Scenic River (NE)
Rangers Rescue Three Following Canoeing Accident

Rangers responded to a call of a canoe wrapped around Cornell Bridge on Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge just after noon on June 14th.

Rangers Bryceson King and Nathan Tillinghast found a woman and child stranded on the flattened boat and a man clinging to a cement bridge pillar nearby. They were advised that neither of the adults could swim and that the woman had sustained injuries that made it difficult for her to help the child.

King provided throw ropes to a member of the party he positioned downstream, then utilized a throw rope from the bridge to assist the three people on the boat. Tillinghast contacted Cherry County EMS and Valentine Fire for backup before entering the river by canoe to provide the trio with support and instruction.

Rescuers were able to safely remove the woman and child from the boat before Tillinghast could use his canoe to remove the man from the bridge pillar. All three were transported to Cherry County Hospital, where they were treated for hypothermia, lacerations and abrasions from the bridge and a near drowning by freshwater aspiration. One victim was immediately transported to Rapid City Regional Hospital in South Dakota and is expected to make a full recovery.

Ozark National Scenic Riverways (MO)
Staff Respond To Flash Flooding

Over six inches of torrential rain fell on a small concentrated area of the Current River watershed on the afternoon of Sunday, June 29th. 

At 3:30 p.m., the Carter County Sheriff’s Department requested emergency assistance to rescue threated and trapped residents in the Fremont, Missouri, area (population approximately 125) from flash flooding. Park staff responded with a Type 4 incident commander, eight rangers, and four park boats. 

Several dozen rescues were performed as the flash flood waters passed through the rural town west of the park. At 6:30 p.m., the flash flood waters moved from the tributaries into the main channel of the Current River above the town of Van Buren, Missouri, and caused extensive localized flooding. The Big Spring Campground was evacuated, but no water affected the campground facilities.  Multiple rescues were performed in Carter County until midnight. 

On June 30th, the waters receded and Big Spring Campground reopened at 9 a.m. Two  unaccounted for families were located and rescued at 10:30 a.m.

The Lower Current River remains closed from Paint Rock to the southern park boundary due to flood waters. State Highway M in Carter County is closed beyond Mill Creek due to road damage caused by the flooding. This impacts travel to the Waymeyer River Access. 

The park is working closely with MODOT to get the road repaired and reopened by the July 4th weekend.

Grand Canyon National Park (AZ)
Search In Progress For Man Missing In River

On the afternoon of Friday, June 27th, the park received a satellite phone call from a commercial river trip reporting a missing passenger at Havasu Rapids.

Victor Tseng of Phoenix reportedly fell from a ledge into the river in mid-afternoon. Tseng was not wearing a personal flotation device at the time and was last seen by members of his party below Havasu Rapids.

Searches have been conducted by air and boat, but no sign of Tseng has so far been found.

Multiple rescues in the Tetons – http://www.tetonvalleynews.net/news/multiple-rescues-in-grand-teton-national-park-on-sunday/article_877c0e46-0094-11e4-9581-001a4bcf887a.html

Broken ankle while fishing – http://www.themountainmail.com/free_content/article_a1dfaf44-faeb-11e3-898e-0017a43b2370.html

USAR Team finds missing toddler – http://www.winknews.com/Local-Florida/2014-06-25/USAR-Search-and-Rescue-team-finds-missing-toddler-in-woods

Missing hiker walks out  http://www.theprovince.com/news/Search+rescue+workers+seek+missing+hiker+Lynn+Canyon/9974727/story.html


Mountain biker dies on trail – http://www.moabsunnews.com/news/article_a3404288-fc15-11e3-8f8c-0017a43b2370.html

Dehydrated hikers rescued in Zion – http://fox13now.com/2014/06/27/hikers-urged-to-pack-extra-water-after-search-and-rescue-operation-at-zion-np/

SAR in Iceland for French tourist – http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.newsoficeland.com/travel/other/item/496-sar-team-searches-for-french-hiker

Three day search for hunter concludes – http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/man-found-after-three-days-missing-in-lake-taupo-forest-6014146

Fall kills hiker – http://www.kutv.com/news/top-stories/stories/vid_12236.shtml

SAR for overdue campers – http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.coloradoan.com/story/news/local/2014/06/30/search-rescue-call-issued-overdue-camper/11805321/


Survival Weekly – 6/8/14


Yellowstone National Park (ID,MT,WY)
Pilot Seriously Injured In Plane Crash In Park

A 54-year old man was injured when his single-engine airplane crashed in the park on Monday morning.

Shortly before 8:30 a.m., several callers reported that a small plane had crashed just north of the Gardiner Cemetery and east of Yellowstone Trail inside Yellowstone National Park. The accident site is south of the publicly-owned Gardiner Airport, which is outside the park boundary.

The seriously injured pilot was removed from the wreckage and transported by ambulance to Gardiner Airport, then transferred to a Summit Air Ambulance helicopter and taken to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital for treatment.

The plane is an Aero Commander agricultural aircraft, which is designed to carry a single pilot and no passengers.  The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have been notified of the accident, which is under investigation.

The Park County Sheriff’s Office and Gardiner Ambulance joined Yellowstone National Park law enforcement rangers, firefighters, and EMS personnel in a park ambulance in responding to the incident.


Mount Rainier National Park (WA)
Six Climbers Killed On Liberty Ridge

The search for a party of six overdue climbers on Liberty Ridge came to a tragic conclusion on May 31st when an air search identified personal items and detected avalanche beacon signals at a location 3,300 feet below the ridge in a debris field on the Carbon Glacier. This area correlates with the fall line in the area of the climbers’ last known location.

With all physical evidence at the scene suggesting that the party was buried in the debris field for nearly three days along with the 3,300 feet fall, it was determined that there was no chance of survival. 

Evidence suggests that the party was swept off the mountain in an avalanche-like event.  The final fall location is extremely hazardous due to continuous rock and ice fall from the ridge above.  Recovery efforts would require ground and aviation resources and would put recovery personnel in the direct path of these hazards.  Incident command made the decision to not conduct those efforts in light of the unacceptable risks to recovery personnel and the operation transitioned to a limited, continuous search at that time. Recovery efforts will be evaluated on an ongoing basis as conditions change. 

The party consisted of two Alpine Ascents International climbing guides and four clients. They last contacted their office on May 28th at approximately 6:00 pm by satellite phone from about 12,800 feet on the Liberty Ridge route. They reported that all was well at the time. The climbers were planning to make their push to the summit the following day. Alpine Ascents reported the overdue party at 4:30 pm on May 30th. 

Approximately 50 people were assigned to the operation, including park staff, commercial climbing guides and military personnel. A team of three climbing rangers conducted a ground search along the Liberty Ridge climbing route.  The US Army Reserve 214th Air Division out of Joint Base Lewis McChord and Northwest Helicopters provided the helicopter assets vital to locating the climbing victims. 

The combined efforts of the ground search and aerial search teams ensured that the suspected accident area was methodically searched for any evidence associated with the climbing victims.  

Drugs, phantom bears, and rescue – http://fox13now.com/2014/06/04/search-and-rescue-underway-in-logan-canyon/

Injured climber rescued http://www.ksl.com/?sid=30127569&nid=148

Stranded hikers rescued – http://fox13now.com/2014/05/31/search-and-rescue-crews-assisting-hikers-near-mt-olympus/

Boaters rescued – http://globalnews.ca/news/1367587/4-boaters-rescued-by-rcaf-search-and-rescue-crew-near-sooke/

Injured ATV rider rescued – http://www.kbzk.com/news/atv-rider-rescued-east-of-bozeman/

Rescue launched for missing man in lake – http://www.heraldargus.com/news/local/man-missing-in-lake-michigan/article_72ae67cc-e9b8-11e3-b884-001a4bcf887a.html

Lost on a jungle islandhttp://www.mysinchew.com/node/98781  &  http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.thestar.com.my/News/Nation/2014/06/03/Huntley-is-probably-injured-says-search-and-rescue-specialist/

Injured and lost motorcycle riders rescued – http://www.krtv.com/news/search-teams-rescue-2-men-in-lewis-and-clark-national-forest/

Stranded hikers rescued – http://www.bclocalnews.com/news/261717631.html

Search initiated for injured hikers – http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.yakimaherald.com/news/latestlocalnews/2237877-8/search-and-rescue-crews-deployed-to-help-injured

Injured hiker rescued by helicopter http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/comorant-search-and-rescue-helicopter-crew-transports-injured-hiker-to-hospital

Dehydrated hiker rescued – http://krwg.org/post/one-lucky-manthanks-grant-county-search-and-rescue

Lost climber rescued – http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/94350/rescue-team-finds-lost-climber-in-semeru

Tasmanian rescue crew locate three missing men – http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-06-07/police-rescue-three-men-missing-in-tasmania/5507658

Mountain biker rescued – http://www.cowichannewsleader.com/news/262313161.html

Injured cyclist rescued – http://www.pentictonwesternnews.com/news/262297921.html

Stranded hiker rescued – http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/69ed17eee7184872b155fd50df92133d/NM–Mountain-Rescue