Updated: 4 hours ago Published: 4 hours ago
Two hikers were rescued this week from the Resurrection Pass Trail on the Kenai Peninsula, after authorities said they had lost their orientation and encountered more snow than expected.
Alaska State Troopers were notified around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday that two people were hiking the popular trail and “needed assistance,” according to an agency online report released Thursday. According to public affairs specialist David Bedard of the Alaska Air National Guard, they were at the southern end of the 39-mile trail, closer to Cooper Landing.
The hikers said they had “lost orientation,” according to an Alaska National Guard statement Wednesday, and were “unsure if they could navigate the snow.” The soldiers said the hikers, using a satellite communication device and a satellite phone, “reported that they had encountered more snow than they had expected” and that they were “exhausted”.
One of the hikers had also fallen into the water and felt cold, soldiers wrote.
The soldiers contacted the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center, which in turn contacted the Alaska Air National Guard. Guardsmen from the 176th Wing used two planes – one for reconnaissance due to bad weather – to rescue the hikers, the statement said. They were picked up by a Pave Hawk helicopter shortly after 5 a.m. Wednesday and taken to an Anchorage hospital for evaluation, the guard and troopers said.
Alaska Air National Guard Capt. Brent Kramer said in the statement that two-way communication through satellite-enabled devices was “key to expediting the rescue effort.”