South Columbia Search and Rescue (SCSAR) responded to a hiking mishap on the Miral Heights trail on Tuesday.
Search and Rescue received a call at about 11:30 a.m. after a 62-year-old female hiker had fallen, sustained serious injuries and was unable to hike out.
Due to the injuries and terrain concerns for an evacuation, it was determined to use local CDFL (Class D fixed line) helicopter extraction team. Members of Nelson SAR and Kootenay Valley Helicopters did a long-line evacuation to our staging area to an awaiting ambulance, said Mike Hudson, SCSAR president.
“Due to a quick response by SCSAR members, BCEHS and friends of the subject we were successful in having her rescued within about 3.5 hours.”
The women headed out earlier that morning with three friends, all very avid hikers.
“The hiking group was aprox 4 km or 45 mins away from the trail head when the incident occurred,” said Hudson. “Luckily one of the members of the group was a retired nurse. Another member quicky headed out to call for help and meet crews at the trail head.”
The trail was in very poor shape due to the rapid changes in recent weather and was very icy, with unstable footing.
Rescuers called in the BC Emergency Health Service as members found it challenging to access the subject, and ultimately a helicopter rescue was put in to play.
In all, 11 members responded some of which were part of SCSAR’s advanced medical team.
“We also had two BC Ambulance members and a nurse to help assess our subject and help her with her injuries and mitigate mild hypothermia,” added Hudson. “SCSAR members built a shelter and a fire to keep our subject warm while we waited for a helicopter to arrive. Our subject had sustained a major arm break which included a compromised shoulder.”
SCSAR thanked the Nelson SAR and the helicopter team as well as the BCEHS attendants for their help making this rescue a success.