The last six months have been “the busiest rescue cycle in Teton County Search and Rescue (TCSAR) history,” according to its 2021 Midseason Rescue Report released on June 28.
The report, published every six months, details TCSAR’s workload from 1st December 2020 through May 31st, 2021. The report is seen as an essential tool, “designed to be informational as well as educational, sharing “lessons learned” to help others prepare for their adventures in the Jackson Hole backcountry” and breaks down each rescue undertaken including, location, date, and time, rescue duration, team members, and what happened.
December and January alone saw 42 rescues, and in 2021, they have done thirteen short-haul rescues, double the amount in any other previous year.
Winter 20/21 saw four fatalities, slightly less than the five-year average of five, and half the eight deaths in 2016. The most common days for rescue were Tuesday and Thursday, and Monday the least.
The report also correlates snowfall and accidents. Unsurprisingly, the more snow there is, the more rescues they attended to. For example, when the Tetons got dumped on in February (Jackson Hole Mountain Resort had its deepest February ever), TSCAR responded to calls almost daily.
During the six-month period, TSCAR volunteers spent 4,800-hours on SAR-related activities; training accounted for more than half of this with 2,764-hours, and rescues accounted for 1,812-hours. Community events took up 224-hours.
A demographical breakdown of rescues reveals that 68% of rescues were for males. 43% were for snowmobilers, 32% were for skiers, 7% snowboarders, 7% hiking, and 4% horseback riding.