Nelson SAR kept busy with three callouts in as many days
Nelson Search and Rescue members were kept busy the past few days with three calls since Sunday.
The influx started Sunday (February 26) morning at 1:20 a.m. when NSAR were paged to assist South Columbia colleagues after two snowmobilers were reported overdue following a trip into the backcountry in the Bombi Summit south of Castlegar Saturday.
West Kootenay Public Information Officer Chris Armstrong said in a media release South Columbia SAR located the two snowmobilers but given the onset of night combined with difficult terrain the decision was made to send SAR members in at first light.
“Ground crews were dispatched and made contact with the subjects,” Armstrong explained.
“Shortly thereafter a helicopter was able to access the site and pick the subjects up.”
“(The two snowmobilers) were wet and cold but in generally good health,” he added.
Armstrong said the second call came in Monday (February 27) at 5:30 p.m. after a backcountry skier was reported overdue at Whitewater Ski Resort near Nelson.
“Crews were sent to two separate ridges in the dark to search for tracks and direction of travel,” Armstrong said.
“Sightings earlier in the day have placed the subject in a remote area.”
Armstrong said Tuesday morning a helicopter rescue crew was able to access the area and located the subject trying to ski his way out.
“The subject was very experienced and was well trained in winter survival but he was alone and was heading in the wrong direction,” he said.
Armstrong advised people heading into the backcountry to always have the 10 essential items on your outdoor pursuits.
“A method of finding your way and an electronic signaling device would have been helpful,” he said.
“Even the best skilled can be fooled by the terrain and become lost.”
Later Monday (February 27), at approximately 6:30 p.m. Armstrong said a second callout for a stuck snowmobiler was received with members of the South Columbia Search and Rescue paged to assist Nelson SAR in the rescue of a single male in mountainous terrain.
“Subject was located and brought back to trail head by UTV and snowmobiles,” Armstrong said.
“Subject was in good health but very cold and tired.”
Armstrong said the individual was riding alone and became stuck and required help.
“This person was in cell service and had an electronic signaling device,” he said.
“It is never advised to travel in the outdoors alone.”