June 2, 2021

Injured Mountain biker / Cady Hill

 

SMR was summoned to aid an injured mountain bike rider in Cady Hill forest, Stowe, VT.

The young rider crashed injuring her right forearm. SMR deployed 2 Medical Hasty team members to the scene and splinted the injured arm. Another 4 members arrived minutes later via ATV/boggan.

The young rider was escorted to an awaiting ambulance for further treatment without incident.

Team Members Responding
Wehse, Speer, Clymer, Westervelt, Millick, Richards

Other Agencies Responding

Stowe EMS and Stowe PD

Time of Call
15.30 – 16.30

Weather Conditions
Clear, calm, 80 degrees

May 29, 2021

Litter Carry / Munroe Trail, Camels Hump

 

SMR was summoned via Mutual Aid to support a hiker on the Monroe Trail (Camel’s Hump) who was in distress and needed medical attention and could not walk.

SMR sent 4 rescue team personnel to support the extraction. Waterbury had sent in a hasty team of two with medical personnel, and SMR followed with the litter/wheel.

By the time SMR had reached the subject, he was feeling better and had begun to walk back down the trail. More rescue members arrived from Waterbury, Huntington and Colchester Technical Rescue. With just over a mile remaining to the Parking Lot, the hiker’s condition worsened and he was loaded into the litter and extracted to a waiting ambulance.

Team Members Responding
Wehse, Speer, Clymer, Richards

Other Agencies Responding

Waterbury and Huntington Backcountry, Camels Hump Backcountry, Colchester Technical Rescue

Time of Call
15.45 – 21.00

Weather Conditions
Clear, calm, 80 degrees

May 26, 2021

Litter Carry / Bamforth Ridge Trail

 

SMR was summoned through Mutual Aid perform a litter carry of an injured hiker off the Bamforth Ridge Trail (Long Trail./Camel’s Hump).

The female hiker injured her ankle Tuesday evening while hiking on the Bamforth Ridge Trail. She hobbled a quarter mile to the Bamforth Ridge Shelter and rested overnight. The hiker’s family called for an extraction on Wednesday morning when the hiker determined she could not bear weight on her ankle.

Waterbury / Huntington BackCountry Team’s led the mission. Stowe Mountain Rescue provided technical assistance for litter carry and litter lowers (belays) on steep segments.

Richmond Backcountry, Green Mountain Valley BC and Colchester technical Rescue all supported the mission.

Team Members Responding
Wehse, Clymer, Millick

Other Agencies Responding

Waterbury / Huntington Backcountry, Richmond Backcountry, Green Mountain Valley Backcountry, Colchester Technical Rescue

Time of Call
08.00 – 14.00

Weather Conditions
Clear, calm, 80 degrees

April 11, 2021

Injured Mountain biker / Cady Hill

 

Stowe Mountain Rescue responded to the report of a female mountain biker injured on Bears Trail in Cady Hill Trails System Stowe.

SMR deployed a two member hasty team to locate and assess patient condition and transport mechanism. Stowe EMS sent in a medic to begin packaging the patient while the rest of the SMR team arrived and assembled the litter / wheel system and deployed to scene of bike accident. Patient was packaged in litter and extracted to awaiting ambulance without incident.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Wehse, Westervelt, Choularton, Millick, Raybould, Burke, Richards

Other Agencies Responding

Stowe EMS

Time of Call
12.15 – 13.30

Weather Conditions
Clear, calm, 75 degrees

April 11, 2021

Water Rescue / Lake Elmore – cancelled call

 

Stowe Mountain Rescue was called to assist Elmore Fire Department with locating 6 people who had been canoeing in Lake Elmore when their boat capsized. Response by SMR was in progress when the call was cancelled by Elmore Fire as all subjects had reached land and were headed to the Elmore fire station to get warm.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Wehse, Clymer, Speer, Westervelt, Rogers, Choularton, Millick, Raybould, Richards

Other Agencies Responding

Elmore Fire Department

Time of Call
01.00 – 01.15

Weather Conditions
Clear, calm, 54 degrees

March 26, 2021

Water Rescue / Bolton

 

Stowe Mountain Rescue (SMR) was dispatched via Mutual Aid to assist Colchester Technical Rescue (CTR) and Bolton Fire Department rescue a man stranded on a rock in the middle of Joiner Brook in Bolton.   The subject was walking his dog near the brook, which was swollen from rain and snow melt, on Friday afternoon, when his dog entered the water and was immediately swept away.  The man jumped in to try to save the dog and was also swept away.   After traveling about 100’ downriver, the man was able to climb up on a rock in the middle of the river just above the falls in the gorge.

CTC and SMR were assigned the technical part of the rescue.   SMR was tasked to execute all technical rope work and CTR would handle the boat/water operation.   SMR set up a twin-tension highline spanning the river (approx 140 ft), along with a suspended trolley and guy lines for left/right maneuver of the rescue boat.    A 17’ semi-rigid inflatable boat was rigged to the high line system and controlled by the guy lines manned on each side of the river.   A CTR rescue technician was then secured to the boat for the rescue operation.    SMR managed the execution of the boat operation, moving the boat out into the river and to the subject’s location.   The subject was then assisted into the boat and back to shore.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Wehse, Clymer, Speer, Westervelt, Rogers, Choularton, Millick, Raybould, Richards

Other Agencies Responding

Colchester Technical Rescue, Bolton Fire, Richmond Fire

Time of Call
13.45 – 1800

Weather Conditions
Rainy,  32 deg F

March 20, 2021

Stranded Hikers / Smuggler’s Notch

 

Stowe Mountain Rescue received a call from dispatch that two hikers had got cliffed out above Smuggler’s Notch. They had hiked up the Sterling Pond Trail from Route 108.  They tried to take a short cut back to the road.  They were told to follow their tracks back to the trail.  They reached the Long Trail and then headed to Sensation Quad on Spruce Peak for evacuation stating they were too tired to continue on their own.   The team deployed four members to stage at the Ski Club.  Two members drove ATVs up to the top of the mountain, picked up the hikers and gave them a ride down the mountain to staging.

Team Members Responding
Wehse, Westervelt, Ruschp, Richards

Other Agencies Responding

Time of Call
17.15 – 19.45

Weather Conditions
Clear, Calm,  32 deg F

March 6, 2021

Injured climber / Smugglers Notch

Stowe Mountain Rescue was called the Notch to rescue a climber who had been hit in the head and knee with falling ice.  The climber was at the bottom of Elephant’s head gully racking up and had not commenced climbing when he was hit by ice dislodged by a climbing party above him.  Personnel from another climbing party with medical training secured the injured climber, provided food, extra clothing and applied a rudimentary splint.

 

Stowe Mountain Resort Ski Patrol provided snowmobile transport for a Mountain Rescue hasty team member who climbed up to the accident scene to assess subject’s injuries and develop an initial extraction plan.   Subject was confirmed not able to walk so SMR deployed a team of five with two ATVs, snowmobile, rescue boggan, medical equipment and rope rescue gear to the scene.   The litter team hauled litter, hypo bag, ropes and medical equipment up to the base of Elephants Head with a rope raising system.  Subject was packed in litter and then extricated back down the slope to Mountain Road via three rope-lower systems.  Subject was then transported to Cambridge Notch Gate where he was medically cleared to pursue medical treatment in personal vehicle with his climbing party.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Wehse, Clymer, Westervelt, Millick, Choularton, Richards

Other Agencies Responding
Stowe Mountain Resort Ski Patrol, Cambridge FD, Cambridge Rescue Squad

Time of Call
10.59 – 15.00

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm,  20 deg F

February 20, 2021

Lost Skier / Mansfield

Stowe Mountain Rescue (SMR) was called out to search for a lost skier on the Mansfield side of Stowe Mountain Resort. The subject had been skiing with her father in the Toll Roads Woods, became separated while skiing the side country off the Toll Road below the Lookout Double chairlift. The lost skier called multiple times into Mansfield Ski Patrol, but poor cell reception and a low battery hampered a successful call to determine the subjects whereabouts. Initial discussion with subject’s father narrowed the search area. The search area was determined to be the large gully below the Toll Road that drains towards the Mansfield Touring Center.

Stowe Mountain Rescue, VT State Police and Mansfield Ski Patrol convened via conference call to discuss situation and develop a search plan. Two SMR team members rode the Lookout Double and began a confinement search along the Toll Road trail starting at the Lookout Double. A second team was assigned to search the middle section of the search area by departing the Toll Road just above the Chapel and following the earth counter toward the top of John’s Road (typical exit point for skiers in this area). A Third team was stationed at the touring center’s Bear Run Trail in case the skier exited the gully quickly before search teams located her. Two search teams on ATVs were also deployed in to the top of Mansfield Touring Center towards and up John’s Road .

The subject was discovered walking down Toll Road by Mansfield Ski Patrol at about 4:45pm. Apparently, she recognized that retracing her path by walking uphill was her best option. This was a very good decision and resulted in her safely self rescuing. The subject was then transported to a very relieved family member without further incident.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Wehse, Van Dyke, Clymer, Westervelt, Speer, Millick, Choularton,  Rogers, Raybould, Richards

Other Agencies Responding
Stowe Mountain Resort Ski Patrol, VSP – car 96

Time of Call
15.00 – 18.00

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm,  25 deg F

February 19, 2021

Injured Snowmobiler / Cottonbrook

Stowe Mountain Rescue was called out to the CottonBrook Recreation area to support extraction of an injured snowmobiler. SMR sent a team of 5 via ATV and Snowmobile to the accident scene, which was located about 2 miles from the main parking area on the side trail that parallels the main CottonBrook road.

Upon arrival, Stowe EMS has already prepped the patient for extraction. SMR quickly packaged the injured patient in the litter and then transported back to waiting ambulance at the Parking Lot.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Wehse, Westervelt, Speer, Burke, Choularton,  Raybould, Richards

Other Agencies Responding
Stowe EMS, VSP

Time of Call
18.00 – 19.30

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm,  26 deg F

February 14, 2021

Stranded Skier or Snowboarder / Smugglers Notch

Stowe Mountain Rescue was dispatched to Smugglers Notch recreation area based on a bystander report of a stranded skier/snowboarder. The bystander walking on Route 108 noticed a person who appeared to be stuck on a precipice over an ice field. After the person did not move for about 10 minutes, the bystander waved. The subject returned the wave. Fearing the person needed assistance, the bystander called 911.

SMR deployed a team of 7 into the Notch to locate and rescue the subject. Upon arrival, the SMR team met the Cambridge Fire/Rescue team who had been looking for the subject for 15 minutes. Both teams continued searching from the road, looking for a subject in distress with no luck. Skiers coming off the piste were questioned to assess whether they had seen/heard any calls for help or bumped into anyone seeking assistance. One pair of snowboarders did indicate they had seen a skier being lowered down an ice pitch but did not have first-hand knowledge of the situation.

SMR deployed a team of 3 up one of the gullies in an attempt to locate the subject near original reported position. The Team discovered a pair of ice climbers on skis who had been climbing in the general vicinity of the initial report; these climbers had been skiing above an ice pitch in a high gulley but did not assist anyone.

The Rescue Team continued to search the cliff area and found no other climbers or signals of distress. The Rescue team staged on the Notch Road continued observation/interviews with no compelling signs/reports of a distressed skier. SMR, based upon its searches, field evidence, the fact that no one had called 911 for assistance and interviews with persons in the Notch determined that the mission was a false alarm and closed out the mission.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Westervelt, Speer, Ruschp, Burke, Wehse, Warren, Clymer,  Richards

Other Agencies Responding
Cambridge Fire and Rescue

Time of Call
13.45 – 17.15

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm,  15 deg F

February 14, 2021

Stranded Skier / Smugglers Notch

Lamoille County Dispatch toned Stowe Mountain Rescue. Apparently, a Stowe Mountain Resort guest called 911 after becoming disoriented while skiing an off-piste section of the Notch. The lone skier was skiing the Spruce Peak area of Stowe Mountain Resort and found his way down the out-of-bounds terrain called Tusk. He became unsure of his location after skiing for a while in unfamiliar terrain. Upon conferring with his father via phone, the subject called 911 for help. Stowe Mountain Rescue dispatched 3 rescue technicians from the first call to an area near the skier based on GPS coordinates picked up from the 911 call. Voice contact was made instantly and after a bit of coaching, the skier was able to self evacuate by skiing down the last bit of steep terrain without assistance.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Westervelt, Speer, Ruschp, Burke, Wehse, Warren, Clymer,  Richards

Other Agencies Responding
Cambridge Fire and Rescue

Time of Call
1500 – 1600

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm,  15 deg F

January 29, 2021

Stranded Skier / Birthday Bowls – Smugglers Notch

Stowe Mountain Rescue rescued a 25 year old female skier from the Birthday Bowl area in Smugglers Notch on Friday. At around 1820 SMR was informed that there was a lost skier somewhere on Spruce Peak. The subject called 911 when she got stuck on the top of a cliff and realized that she was lost. It was determined, from the subject’s cell phone coordinates that she was approximately 300 vertical feet above the VT 108 in the Notch near the “Workout Wall” ice climbing area and near the “Birthday Bowls”. SMR staged at Barnes Camp and deployed the Team into the Notch. Four team members climbed up to the subject and she was lowered and short roped down to the road. She was then evacuated to Barnes Camp.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Westervelt, Speer, McLean, Wehse, Clymer, Millick,  Rogers, Choularton, Reybould, Richards

Other Agencies Responding
VT State Police / Car 96

Time of Call
130 – 1930

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm,  0 deg F

January 23, 2021

Lost Snowboarders / Stowe Mountain Resort – Ranch Valley

Stowe Mountain Rescue rescued three lost snowboarders on Saturday night.  At around 1700 hours, Vermont State Police contacted SMR regarding three teenagers.  Stowe Ski Patrol indicated that they had boarded out of bounds from the Toll Road.  SMR determined by their cell phone location that they were approximately 60 vertical feet from the intersection of John’s Road and Easy Out at the Mount Mansfield Touring Center.  Cell phone contact with the subjects indicated that they had no light source, map compass or other means of navigation. SMR staged at the Touring Center and deployed personnel on ATVs and Snowmachines toward the location of the lost boarders.  Upon arriving at the intersection, two members navigated by snowshoes towards the cell phone coordinates.  Shortly thereafter, voice contact was made and then physical contact was made with the lost subjects.  They were uninjured but cold.   They were provided water, food and extra clothing and then were evacuated to the Touring Center and united with their families.

Team Members Responding
Govoni, Westervelt, Speer, Clymer, Millick,  Rogers, Richards

Other Agencies Responding
None.

Time of Call
1700 – 1930

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm, Scattered Snow showers, 10 deg F

January 10, 2021

Lost Hikers / Mount Mansfield

Stowe Mountain Rescue was called to assist a party of 4 hikers up on Mt. Mansfield.   The initial report indicated that three subjects were unsure of their current location and their 4th member’s location was unknown as they had not had contact with him for many hours.

The party of four had parked in the Barnes Camp Parking Lot with intent to hike up Hellbrook trail to the Mansfield Chin and return via the Long Trail.  One member of the team hiked aggressively and soon outpaced the other three.   At around 5:40 PM, the party of three called 911 for support, as they had not reached the summit (Chin), were unsure of their location, were cold and wet, and more importantly had not had contact with the 4th member of the team in quite some time.

SMR responded with a team of 8 with an initial plan to locate the 3 hikers based on an initial Lat/Long coordinates and develop a search plan for the 4th member of the party.   SMR Staged at Midway Lodge and received a ride up to the top of the Gondola via a ‘bus’ snowcat provided by Stowe-Vail, Inc.   Prior to departure up to the top of the Gondola, the 4th member of the team was located at the bottom of Stowe; he had hiked back down safely without conversing with his hiking party.

SMR’s plan to retrieve the party of three was to take the bootpack up from the Gondola station then traverse below the Chin via ‘High Traverse’ trail to the junction of High Traverse, HellBrook and Long Trail   The High Traverse  proved slow going, as SMR had to break trail through deep snow and heavy underbrush (typical use is in mid winter where the snowpack covers much of the low shrubbery).   SMR team decided to alter course and head down Profanity to the intersection of LongTrail, and gave the lost subjects instructions to take the Long Trail South towards the Taft Lodge where parties would meet.  Upon reaching Long Trail, SMR located the subjects immediately, assessed condition and proceeded down Long Trail to exit on Cliff Trail and an awaiting BusCat for a ride to the bottom.    Subjects were reunited with their 4th member by about 9:30 PM.

Team Members Responding
Wehse, Westervelt, Clymer, Millick, Rogers, Richards, Chegwidden

Other Agencies Responding
None.

Time of Call
1800 – 2130

Weather Conditions
Overcast, Calm, 10 deg F