Lost hikers found 'shivering' in clothing that was 'frozen solid', B.C. search and rescue team says
Lions Bay Search and Rescue was called out to the Harvey Basin area over the weekend. (Lions Bay SAR/Facebook)
VANCOUVER -- Multiple search and rescue teams were called to North Shore mountains over the weekend, helping individuals who were lost or unequipped for wintery conditions.
Lions Bay Search and Rescue posted to Facebook Sunday saying it was called to the Harvey Basin area the day before. The post says two hikers missed a turn off to the Lions Trail and instead continued up the Harvey Basin trail. But along the way, they got lost on the snow-covered path.
"Fortunately the hikers were able to get cell coverage and were able to relay their rough location to our SAR manager," the post says.
"The subjects, wearing dark camouflaged clothing, were luckily spotted from the air and two teams were quickly dropped off on a nearby ridge."
Lions Bay SAR says its team had to cross slick, uneven terrain with about 20 centimetres of fresh snow.
"The subjects were found shivering, wearing cotton clothing that had become frozen solid," Lions Bay SAR said. "The subjects were given a complete change of clothes, including proper hiking boots, and were warmed with heat vests and tea."
While helicopters were initially deployed, it was decided the hikers were well enough to trek back out with the rescue team. That hike took about three hours, and the six SAR members and the two hikers made it back out at about 10 p.m.
"Things could have turned out much worse last night. The subjects had not left a trip plan, not told anyone where they were going, had completely inappropriate clothing (especially footwear), had no flashlight, and did not backtrack and retrace their steps after they lost the trail," Lions Bay SAR's post says.
"Had they not been located last night, we are doubtful that the outcome would have been so good."
'Unprepared' hiker assisted on North Shore
North Shore Search and Rescue says it was also called out to help a hiker over the weekend. The SAR team posted on Facebook saying that hiker was also "very unprepared for the conditions."
A team was called to Hanes Valley after a hiker tried to assist another while crossing the boulder field. That hiker was unable to assist them, and chose to hike out and call for help.
"Our subject was wearing inappropriate clothing for the conditions and was having trouble navigating the slippery snow covered boulders," the post says.
North Shore SAR warns hikers shouldn't trek out to the mountains if they aren't prepared for winter weather.
"We would like to thank the Good Samaritan who spent an hour trying to assist the subject and then had the forethought to get all of his information as well as a detailed description of his clothing and location," the post says.
Winter conditions led to multiple trail closures on the North Shore Monday, like the Grouse Grind and the backcountry in Lynn Headwaters Regional Park, which includes the Hanes Valley trail where SAR crews were called on Sunday.