Kimberley SAR locate lost skier
On March 17, Kimberley RCMP activated Search and Rescue (SAR) after receiving a report of a lost skier.
A skier became separated from some friends around 2 p.m. after traveling out of bounds at Kimberley Alpine Resort. The group of skiers was able to find their way about but couldn’t locate their friend. They called the RCMP around 6:30 p.m. who made some preliminary inquires. Once it was established she had not made it out on her own, police activated Kimberley SAR through Emergency Management BC.
A team of 14 volunteers mustered in the Kimberley Alpine Resort maintenance area and began searching the mountainous area. Three teams set out to check various locations based on where she had last been seen and routes she may have taken, reported Kimberley RCMP Detachment commander Sgt. Chris Newel.
Shortly after 9 p.m. one of the teams made contact with the missing skier. But the terrain, including deep snow, made getting her out very slow. The bush was too dense for snowmobile passage and it was too dark for a helicopter. The team was able to provide food and water along with some dry gloves and snowshoes and they walked out.
Once clear of the dense bush Kimberley Alpine Resort assisted in transporting her back. She was cold, hungry and scared but did not require medical treatment. The SAR team finished up the task at 1 a.m.
“Search and Rescue would like to remind persons using the backcountry that once you become disorientated or lost to stay put! Moving around in an attempt to find your way out only prolongs the process of searching. Teams search areas and once done they typically move to another area, if you continue to move around you could end up behind them,” explained Sgt. Newel. “Also, call for help early, once darkness sets in it becomes considerably more difficult for search teams. It also limits addition support such as helicopters.
“If you do venture into the backcountry or out of bounds make sure you are properly equipped and let others know where you are and when you are expected to return.”
Kimberley Search and Rescue would like to acknowledge the assistance of Kimberley Alpine Resort in the search effort.