A snowmobiler is recovering after spending the night outside in Graystokes Provincial Park on Sunday.
According to Central Okanagan Search and Rescue (COSAR), the snowmobiler didn’t return with the group during the Kelowna Snowmobile Club’s poker run, which caused members to become concerned.
The snowmobiler arrived late to the run and got on his snowmobile the second time ever, traveling by himself and eventually getting lost off the trail in deep snow.
The club along with COSAR began looking for the snowmobiler around 7:00 p.m. Sunday and eventually found him at around 3:30 a.m. Monday morning. RCMP were also alerted.
“The Kelowna Snowmobile Club members were really essential (in the rescue effort),” said Ed Henczel with Central Okanagan Search and Rescue.
“They know the trails really well and they’re all awesome riders. So, (the club members and COSAR) split up into two teams and we started combing the trails. I would say our sleds probably racked up 500 kilometers. We had our team going in all directions and eventually one of the snowmobile club guys found him.”
Henczel said the lost snowmobiler did the right thing by staying by his sled and waiting for help. Once the group was able to free his snowmobile the rider was able to ride his vehicle back to his parked truck on his own.
COSAR recommends that snowmobilers follow Adventure Smart’s Three T’s when sledding in the backcountry. The Ts include: having a solid trip plan, making sure you have the right training and to take the essentials.