Crews rescue multiple hikers as snowy condition persist on North Shore
Published Monday, May 22, 2017 1:16PM PDT
Last Updated Tuesday, May 23, 2017 12:46PM PDT
With sunny, warm weather finally washing over the south coast, outdoor enthusiasts flooded into the mountains over the May long weekend.
Many of them, however, needed help getting safely back out.
A man hiking near Lost Lake in West Vancouver fell through some snow on Sunday, hurting his knee. North Shore Rescue used a chopper with a long line to pluck him from the wilderness and fly him to an ambulance.
"Unfortunately with the snow pack, we're going to get a lot more twisted ankles and lower limb injuries,” North Shore Rescue search manager Don Jardine told CTV Vancouver.
On Monday, three women set out for a hike above Cypress Bowl and were surprised to find trails still covered in nearly a metre of snow.
"We saw other hikers with running shoes and wearing the same clothes as us so we thought we'd be fine,” said 19-year-old Rana Nour, who was with her sister and a friend.
Eventually, the women decided it was too cold and dangerous to continue their hike or try to make their way back down on their own, so they called 911. North Shore Rescue brought them off the mountain in a helicopter as well.
"I felt the need to call 911 because I couldn't move,” said 21-year-old Rema Nour, who was not seriously injured. “My feet just felt frozen and I couldn't function.”
North Shore Rescue expects more people to venture into the wilderness now that the weather has improved.
That is something they support, provided people know what they are getting themselves into and prepare accordingly.
"Don't overestimate your abilities. Go on trails you've been on before,” Jardine said. “Go prepared for the snow. If you think you're not prepared then turn around and go back. You don't have to keep going."
Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue also used a helicopter as they looked for a woman who went walking with a dog in Golden Ears Park on Sunday and did not return when she was expected.
When crews found the woman on Monday morning, she told them she got lost and with darkness closing in decided to spend the evening with some people she met at a campsite near Alder Flats.
“When she realized the helicopter and all the search teams were looking for her she was more than slightly embarrassed,” said Rick Laing, a manager with Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue.