1 dead, 2 rescued in backcountry emergencies near Golden this week


2024-01-25 01:05 PST

File # 2024-140 / 2024-148

The words News Release written over the RCMP logo with RCMP colours

The Golden-Field RCMP responded to 2 backcountry SOS activations this week. One involved a fatal snowmobile incident, and the other resulted in the safe extraction of 2 backcountry skiers.

Golden-Field RCMP File 2024-140

On January 21, 2024, around 5 p.m. MST, the Golden-Field RCMP received an emergency SOS activation from a Zoleo device in a backcountry area near Frigate Mountain in Donald, BC.

6 snowmobilers were heading back to the Hope Creek Snowmobile Staging Area after a day of sledding when one of them left the trail down a steep embankment and hit some trees.

Regrettably, the 24-year-old man died on impact. His friends called for help, and the Golden-Field RCMP activated the Golden Area District Search and Rescue team.

As the area was so remote, it took the team several hours to arrive by land. The deceased man was extracted and transferred to the BC Coroners Service at approximately 1 a.m.

The RCMP investigated alongside the BC Coroners Service, who have now taken over the investigation.

The group was very well prepared for their backcountry adventure; they had all the right gear, they were experienced riders, and even with all these measures in place, sometimes things still go wrong states Constable Kat Robinson, Media Relations Officer for the Golden-Field RCMP. We are lucky to have such a skilled Search and Rescue team that was able to access this remote location the same night and provide some closure for the young man’s family.

Golden-Field RCMP File 2024-148

On January 22, 2024 at approximately 4 p.m. MST, the Golden-Field RCMP received an emergency activation on a Spot device mapping to Emerald Peak in Yoho National Park.

A call was placed to Banff Parks Dispatch, and a team of Parks Canada Mountain Safety Specialists was deployed. The team attempted to send a helicopter before it got dark, but unfortunately they got fogged in.

The Mountain Safety Specialist team sent a search party by land, and found 2 backcountry skiers, both 25-year-old men, who were stranded on a cliff and unable to continue.

The team was able to extract one skier that night, and some search and rescue members remained and set up camp on the mountain with the second skier overnight.

The second man was extracted by helicopter the following day, and luckily no parties were injured.

Always expect the best but be prepared for the worst when you plan backcountry adventures or participate in extreme sports, advises Constable Kat Robinson. Know the terrain, tell a friend where you are going, pack emergency gear just in case, and carry a GPS device with emergency capabilities.

All the young men in these cases were adequately prepared, and emergency response teams were able to locate them as soon as possible.

Released by

Cst. Kat Robinson
Media Relations Officer
Golden-Field RCMP
1419 11th Ave N Golden BC V0A 1H0

Email: katherine.robinson@rcmp-grc.gc.ca

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