A snowmobiler has the combined efforts of the Central Okanagan Search and Rescue (COSAR) and the Kelowna Snowmobile Club to thank after he was rescued just before midnight on Dec. 21.
COSAR spokesperson Ed Henczel said the 60-year-old snowmobiler became separated from his party at around 3 p.m., with his companions calling a search crew after he failed to return to the Graystokes Provincial Park parking lot at sundown.
“A dozen COSAR members and eight sledders from the snowmobile club launched the search around 7 p.m.,” he said.
Search crews combed through the park’s trails, locating the snowmobiler just before midnight. His snowmobile had gotten stuck in deep snow when he tried to turn around.
About 20 centimetres of snow fell while COSAR and the snowmobile club were conducting the search, which made spotting his tracks difficult, but Henczel said fortunately, his headlight was visible from the trial.
“He stayed calm and waited by his Yamaha for a little over four hours before he was spotted by a search team.”
The man was wet and cold, but he was uninjured, he said.
Henczel added that it is important for those heading out to the backcountry to be equipped for the worst-case scenario.
Tips on ensuring you have a safe backcountry trip can be found at AdventureSmart.