Comox Valley Search and Rescue (CVSAR) was activated by the Comox Valley RCMP yesterday afternoon to assist a 29-year-old solo backcountry skier who became stranded following what she described as a series of avalanche events in the Mt Beecher area of Strathcona Park, BC.
The experienced, well-prepared skier called 911 after reaching a safe location. The late-season snowpack and cooler temperature have allowed many backcountry enthusiasts to don their skis late into the season.
After consulting with the avalanche safety officer and the cooperation of clearing weather, a team was inserted with the assistance of RCMP Helicopter “Air 8”. The team then navigated to the woman and flew her out to safety.
CVSAR reminds everyone heading out into the backcountry to check conditions before you go, to travel with a partner, and as in the case of this experienced backcountry skier, take the essentials (@bcadvsmart) to keep you warm and dry in the event of becoming delayed or stranded.
As is often the case in these situations, the woman’s cell phone failed. In this instance, she carried an Inreach satellite device to make contact with her partner and communicate throughout the five-hour operation.