Search and Rescue Busy This Weekend
Written by Andrew-Rossi on May 1, 2018
An all-volunteer crew of Park County residents responded to two separate incidents that resulted in successful rescues over the weekend.
Saturday morning at 6 a.m., Search and Rescue crew and Cody Regional Health ambulance staff responded to the Buffalo Bill Reservoir after a report that a Northwest College student had capsized his kayak, and was not wearing a life jacket. Shelten Simmons of Forsyth, Montana did make it to shore before Search and Rescue could arrive, and was treated for hypothermia at Cody Regional Health Hospital.
Although the crew’s services ended up not being required, they mobilized for the call – only to be called out again at 12:30 a.m. Sunday to respond to a call for help from two Cody men who found themselves stranded on the Sweetwater Trail about a mile north of the Wapiti Campground. Dalton Epperson and Tukker Betz had hiked up the trail to do horn hunting, but when they came back that afternoon, the creek that they had successfully crossed that morning had risen due to the warm weather and snowmelt.
The rescue was delayed until dawn, but Search and Rescue volunteers stayed with the men, albeit on the opposite shore, until they could safely cross the creek using a small pontoon boat and anchor ropes.
Lance Mathess with the Park County Sheriff’s Office praised the members of the volunteer search and rescue squad.
Mathess points out that the SAR members who were up all night at the Sweetwater Creek rescue reported back to the Search and Rescue hall at 9:00 Sunday morning when the mission was complete, and immediately reported to Cedar Mountain to complete a 3-day Technical Rope Rescue Course being taught by experts from Jackson over the weekend.