Two recent rescues serve as reminders for those venturing into British Columbia's outdoors at this time of the year to be properly prepared for cold-weather conditions and survival in the wilderness.
Earlier this week, a search was launched after a hiker was reported missing in the North Shore mountains.
Zheng-Hui Tang went missing on October 30 while hiking up to the Lions alone on the Howe Sound Crest Trail. He was reported missing after he failed to meet his companion, who had turned back earlier that day.
North Shore Rescue (NSR) led a search that involved two helicopters, Squamish Search and Rescue, RCMP, and B.C. Parks and Metro Vancouver staff.
According to North Shore Rescue, the hiker became lost and spent the night in a creek drainage area below the trail. On October 31, he found a logging road in the watershed and a contractor spotted him around 2 p.m.
CBC News reported that he was improperly dressed for the weather (runners, shorts, leggings) and also didn’t have survival preparations—he didn’t have extra clothing, a flashlight, or means to start a fire, and only a small amount of food and water.
Meanwhile in southeastern B.C., a couple and their dog were rescued from the backcountry after being missing for a week during a camping trip.
Columbia Valley RCMP stated on October 31 that a 24-year-old man and a 22-year-old woman who had been reported missing were rescued.
During an aerial search of a remote area along Quin Creek Forest Service Road in the Rocky Mountains, east of Wasa, B.C., RCMP aircraft spotted the woman’s vehicle and then saw the couple’s SUV stuck in a creek crossing filled with snow and ice.
Not far away from the vehicle, those aboard the aircraft saw an outstretched orange tarp and a large arrow with the word “help” etched into the snow.
The couple and their dog were found to have taken shelter in a nearby cabin.
They were taken to hospital for medical assessment.