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Snowmobiler near Vernon rescued after eight hours missing

Lone Sheep Publishing
By Lone Sheep Publishing
March 6th, 2023

Vernon SAR report that a snowmobiler was found after being missing for more than eight hours.

Vernon SAR, along with Vernon North Okanagan RCMP, were called out Friday at 6 p.m. after the snowmobiler was separated from his party and had become lost and then got stuck.

At this time he activated his iPhone SOS and his SPOT device.

Vernon SAR said due to the current winter conditions, delayed responding and spent considerable time pre-planning — utilizing an avalanche safety officer to review the terrain and the risk of avalanche that was considerable.

“We spent more time planning a safe route into our lost sledder; then we created plans B and C,” Vernon SAR said.

Vernon SAR said 16 members and two resource members, from Hunters Range Snowmobile Association and Lumby Mabel Lake Snowmobile Association responded to the call.

The team reached the search area, performed a recce and then reached the sledder via a safe route through the trees. To ensure the team could get back up safely they packed a trail and after getting to our lost sledder the team traveled down the mountain and finished just after 2 a.m.

“Our sledder did many things right,” Vernon SAR said. “He has survival equipment, has built a shelter in the form of a snow cave and was in the process of trying to start a fire when we arrived.”

Vernon SAR said would like to remind everyone that with the current conditions it is important that we put in extra planning to ensure everyone comes home safely. The safety of our members is our top priority. This may mean that our response is delayed several hours or that we are only able to respond in daylight hours.

Vernon SAR would like to thank our resources at the Lumby Snowmobile Club and the Hunters Range Snowmobile Club who always offer up a helping hand when it comes to looking for the lost. We would also like to thank the Hunters Range groomer Justin Evans who went out of his way to ensure we had a smooth and safe trip out. It really makes a difference when they’ve put in the hard work.

“They say it takes a village. In this case it took several. You folks really are the best,” Vernon SAR said.


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