The fog was thick and affected how well headlamps worked at night during the search. Facebook photo, CVGSAR

Island SAR team finds hikers stranded in Strathcona Park at 4:30 a.m.

Hikers were lost in fog Friday night and missed junction on way to campsite

An all-night search in Strathcona Park serves as a good reminder for hikers to be prepared when they venture into the wilderness.

In this case, Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue (CVGSAR) was contacted to find a pair of lost hikers about 9:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 9. The two had become lost in the fog while returning to Circlet Lake from Mount Albert Edward.

“There was certainly lots of ample warning about the weather,” says CVGSAR president Paul Berry.

The search-and-rescue team found them about 4:30 a.m. on Aug. 10. The hikers had been stranded in the fog on a ridge above Circlet Lake at about 1,500 metres.

“They had missed the turn back down, or the junction on the trail back down to Circlet, gone too far west and ended up on a cliff face on the western shore of the lake,” Berry says.

After the team found them, they set up camp and brought them out once it was daylight on Saturday.

“They just pitched a tent, brewed some soup and got them warm, and basically caught a couple of hours sleep until first light and then hiked them back down to their campsite at Circlet Lake,” Berry says.

READ MORE: Comox Valley SAR looking for missing local hiker in Strathcona Park

READ MORE: Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue finds lost hiker

In this case, one of the hikers at a location where she could send a message to her mother in Washington. The mother contacted Washington authorities, who contacted Comox Valley RCMP, which in turn got in touch with CVGSAR to start a search. A team of four hiked into the area to find the pair, though seven or eight other members helped in a support or planning role through the night.

Berry points out the pair did some things right in this case: staying in one place, having a communication device that worked, using a noise-making device like a horn that helped the team find them and bringing flashlights.

“They had some things with them to help them out through the night,” he says.

However, he emphasizes there are some things the two hikers should have done differently, such as leaving for the summit earlier in the day, preparing for changing weather conditions, having a map of the area and being wary of all rock cairns as guides.

“Certainly, time of day heading up was problematic,” he says.

The fog that came in was especially thick in the area and made searching difficult.

“Even your headlight beam didn’t provide you much visibility,” he adds.

As well, Berry recommends hikers have a navigation device like a GPS because it is not possible to rely on one’s mobile phone in remote locations and sometimes there are no well-worn trails to follow.

“Once you’re in the alpine, you need to have good navigation skills,” he says.



mike.chouinard@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

The search team led the hikers out Saturday morning once there was daylight. Facebook photo, CVGSAR

Just Posted

North Cowichan taxpayers could face a one-time 133% increase in ‘worst case’ VIMC lawsuit

An average home could see a tax increase of $2,164 in one year

LAKE FLASHBACK: Remember swine flu? Bosnian conflict? Moving St. Christopher’s? It’s been a while

From worldwide stories to those close to home, we’ve a real cross-section this week

Mary Lowther column: Making your own supplements from garden plants

Health food stores offer powdered green supplements to augment deficiencies of commercial vegetables

Lake Cowichan fire department back with annual toy and food drive on Dec. 13-14

As Lake area gets ready to fill Christmas hampers, firefighters call for donations of toys and food

Chargers in every match at provincial tourney

DCS finishes 12th after competitive tournament

VIDEO: Federal Liberals’ throne speech welcomes opposition’s ideas

Trudeau will need NDP or Bloc support to pass legislation and survive confidence votes

VIDEO: John Lennon’s iconic Rolls Royce rolls into Vancouver Island college for checkup

Royal BC Museum, Camosun College and Coachwerks Restorations come together to care for car

VIDEO: Rockslide closes part of Highway 93 in Fairmont Hot Springs

Geotechnical team called in to do an assessment after rocks fell from hoodoos

Petition calls for appeal of ex-Burns Lake mayor’s sentence for sex assault

Prosecution service says Luke Strimbold’s case is under review

Northwest B.C. wildlife shelter rescues particularly tiny bear cub

Shelter co-founder says the cub weighs less than a third of what it should at this time of year

BC firefighters to help battle Australian bushfires

Canada sent 22 people, including 7 from B.C.

B.C. NDP touts the end of MSP premiums

Horgan, James held news conference to reiterate that people will get their last bill this month

Oscar Hickes: Longest running hockey tournament on Vancouver Island cancelled

Patrick Murray, one of the organizers for the tournament, broke the sad news on social media.

Illicit drug deaths down, but B.C. coroner says thousands still overdose

Chief coroner Life Lapointe says province’s drug supply remains unpredictable

Most Read