2 hikers rescued from Quandary Monday
September 7, 2009
The Summit County Rescue Group rescued two hikers from cliff bands on the west side of Quandary Peak near Breckenridge today in a six-hour technical evacuation.
The two hikers, both visiting from Tennessee, were dropped at the Blue Lakes trailhead at 7 a.m. Sunday by a family member. They ascended the peak via the west ridge route, but became disoriented during the descent and lost the route. After traversing cliff bands in search of a way down, they finally settled down to spend the night on a ledge.
The family member called 911 when they did not show up for pick-up that evening. A search effort was scheduled for daybreak on Monday morning.
At 6 a.m. Monday, 16 rescuers began the search from the Blue Lakes trailhead. The two hikers were spotted from the west side at approximately 8 a.m. They were “cliffed out” (unable to ascend or descend) in an area where The Summit County Rescue Group has performed several technical evacuations in similar circumstances previously, including in July of this year.
The hikers were well prepared and were carrying extra food and water, several layers of warm clothing, a flashlight and a whistle. The warm clothing allowed them to get through the night with less risk of hypothermia, and the whistle alerted searchers and helped to expedite their rescue.
Rescuers lowered the two hikers via a 200-foot rope to the bottom of the cliff bands and assisted them down a scree field to the trail below. Both hikers were uninjured.
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This was SCRG’s eighth mission on Quandary Peak so far in 2009.