Teton park ties record for rescues

Rangers used the short-haul method for the Grand Stand rescue Friday, after a climber got lost and activated a search beacon.

The sight of choppers buzzing the Teton peaks is becoming almost a daily occurrence.

Last week Kelsey Dayton of the Casper Star-Tribune reported that rangers were nearing a record tally for major rescues in Grand Teton National Park. With two more helicopter operations this weekend, the park has tied the record, with 30 so far this year.

The latest incidents involve climbers from out of town, one of whom got lost on the Grand Teton and requested a rescue, and the other a woman who sustained likely severe injuries from a fall in Death Canyon. The park news blog has details.

Last year, park rangers undertook 17 major rescues — defined as costing more than $500 — and in 2009 made 16, Dayton reported. Using a helicopter costs $800 per hour, so every chopper mission is a major incident.

Also, lightning has sparked the Red Rock Fire in the Gros Ventre Wilderness, 6 miles from Slide Lake. The fire blew up Sunday and is estimated at 950 acres.

(Photo via GTNP)

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Posted under Environment, Sports

3 Comments so far

  1. g August 22, 2011 12:23 pm

    I don’t get it, so the guy was off route, and wanted a ride down in a helicopter, and his buddy walked out? They should put this guy in a stockade for 48 hours at lupine meadows with free apples and rocks to passers by to pelt him with. For that matter, the top of the grandstand is probably one of the best places to sleep through a night in the lower 48. He was purportedly prepared to climb the black ice, but could not bivy in summer conditions? wtf

  2. gt August 22, 2011 9:51 pm

    This guy had a “freak out” and shouldnt have been up there in the first place. These SPOT locators give unprepared people a false sense of security. He should be charged for his ride down, not to mention fined for putting the lives of his rescuers in danger, always an issue with helicopter rescues in the mountains.

  3. gringo August 25, 2011 4:46 am

    That guy should be ashamed and should absolutely pay for his heli-taxi ride down.
    what an embarrassment!

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