After a busy summer, crews rescue 2 hikers on Saturday

A woman sustained a concussion and broken collarbone after falling more than 20 feet at Vesper Peak.

GRANITE FALLS — Search and rescue crews helped two hikers to safety this weekend, in what has been the busiest year ever recorded for the Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue team, according to the sheriff’s office.

On Saturday, rescue teams were called to Vesper Peak and Blanca Lake, both in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.

By the end of Labor Day weekend the search and rescue team had been called to nearly 330 missions. In previous years that number has been about 200 to 280, sheriff’s office spokesperson Courtney O’Keefe said in an email.

“No previous years have ever been this high by the end of summer,” she said. “We believe it is a result of both good weather and due to COVID-19 folks are likely looking outdoors for summer activities.”

Around 2 p.m. Saturday, reports came in that a woman who was hiking near Vesper Peak had sustained a broken collarbone and severe concussion after she fell more than 20 feet off a cliff, O’Keefe said.

Helicopters were undergoing maintenance and not available, so a team walked into the wilderness to reach the 30-year-old hiker. She was out by about 9 p.m. and taken to a hospital in a personal vehicle, O’Keefe said.

That same day, around 6 p.m., crews were called to another incident near Blanca Lake. A hiker had broken her ankle about a mile into the trail. A team also hiked in to bring her out. That mission was complete by 11 p.m. She was transported to a hospital by aid, O’Keefe said.

In both cases, the women were hiking with other people.

Search and rescue was called three other times on Saturday, but those requests were resolved or cancelled without help from officials.

“While we do have commissioned deputies that coordinate our SAR Unit, we would not be able to conduct these missions if it wasn’t for our volunteers,” Sheriff Adam Fortney wrote on Facebook Saturday night. “I want the community in Snohomish County to know what these folks do every day.”

Stephanie Davey: 425-339-3192; sdavey@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @stephrdavey.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Vehicles start to back ups at I-5's exit 192 as rush hour begins. (Lizz Giordano / The Herald)
Survey: Snohomish is state’s sixth-healthiest county

While the county has low birth rates among teens, drivers here have some of the longest commute times.

Everett's Christopher Sembroski during centrifuge training at the NASTAR Center in Pennsylvania. (John Kraus/Inspiration4 photo)
Everett’s own spaceman thrilled to join all-civilian mission

Christopher Sembroski is in training to be part of a three-day SpaceX Dragon flight funded by a billionaire.

Police seek suspect in Mountlake Terrace shooting

Two men who were shot were in critical condition and transported to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

Snohomish County kicks off new rental assistance program

It starts with nearly $25 million from the U.S. Treasury Department. More funding is expected soon.

A dog died and several people were displaced in a fire at an apartment complex in Mukilteo on Monday. (Mukilteo Fire Department)
Dog dies in Mukilteo apartment fire early Monday

Several people were displaced, and the damage was estimated at $850,000.

Firefighters kept a wildfire in the Grandview area northeast of Arlington from growing beyond the 1.5 acres it torched Sunday afternoon. (North County Fire/EMS)
Brush fire near Arlington scorches grass and shrubs

The fire reached about 1.5 acres Sunday afternoon.

Kelsey Dunlap and Brian Matson. (Contributed photos)
2 Edmonds College students make state all-academic team

Edmonds College students make state all-academic team Edmonds College students Kelsey Dunlap… Continue reading

With desks stacked away to provide social distance spacing, tenth grader Zendon Bugge attends a World History class during the first day of school for Everett High students on Monday, April 19, 2021 in Everett, Washington.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Students statewide returned to school buildings on Monday

Districts are now required to provide in-person class two days a week for kids through grade 12.

Firefighters work to put out a blaze at a house in the Meadowdale area of Edmonds early Saturday morning.  (South County Fire)
Man, woman seriously injured in Meadowdale house fire

They were taken to Harborview Medical Center. Three other adults and a dog escaped with no injuries.

Most Read