Saturday, January 17, 2009
Routt County Search and Rescue crews located two lost and stuck snowmobilers in southeastern Routt County at about 4:40 p.m. Friday and guided them back to safety later that evening.
The two men in their 20s - one from Milner, one from Illinois - met on Rabbit Ears Pass and decided to snowmobile together, Search and Rescue incident commander Russ Sanford said. The two men got lost in the Harrison Creek drainage, just south of Walton Peak, and called for help at about 12:30 p.m. Friday.
Search and Rescue tried to guide them back out using GPS coordinates from one of their cell phones, but the two men ended up getting their snowmobiles stuck and needing assistance on the ground, Sanford said.
A team of three snowmobilers reached the two men, who were uninjured, at about 4:40 p.m. The two Search and Rescue members were assisted by Jason Cobb, co-owner of Steamboat Snowmobile Tours, who knows the area very well, Sanford said.
The lost men had some basic supplies on them and had been able to build a fire to keep warm and dry off while they waited for help, Sanford said.
"It was a rough ride out," Sanford said, given that the riders were not too experienced and had to climb a hill of about 1,000 vertical feet.
Everyone was out of the field by about 7:45 p.m. Friday, Sanford said.
"We made a continued effort to get the sleds out," Sanford said. "One of the individuals crashed his sled into a tree and wrecked it, but we all made it out safe and sound."
Man reported lost on Mount Werner never actually lost
A 22-year-old Oak Creek man reported missing by his girlfriend at about 10 p.m. Thursday night safely made it home early Friday morning.
Crews from Search and Rescue and Steamboat Ski Patrol were poised to search for the man on Mount Werner and the surrounding backcountry Friday. The unidentified man was last seen Thursday morning, when he was dropped off at the Gondola Transit Center to snowboard, Sanford said.
The search was called off at 7 a.m. Friday, after the man arrived home safely in Oak Creek. The man, who didn't have a cell phone, never found a ride back to South Routt at the end of the day, and reportedly ended up walking and hitchhiking home, Sanford said.
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