BONNERS FERRY — On Sunday, Nov. 4, around 7 p.m. Boundary County Sheriff’s Office and Boundary Search and Dive Rescue Team responded to a report of a lost hunter in the Dodge Peak area.
The 29-year-old man did not meet his partner at their scheduled rendezvous point on the Upper Pack River side of Dodge Peak. SAR teams deployed shortly after 8 p.m.
“Our team did an excellent job,” said Search and Dive Rescue Vice Commander Tony Jeppesen. “With the help of being able to be in communications with the lost subject, we were able to narrow down his location very quickly, instruct him to stay put, and we were able to get a team to him in less than hour from deployment.”
The SAR team located the missing hunter at about 9:10 p.m. in the Dodge Creek drainage.
According to Jeppesen, the hunter was cold and wet but in good health. They transported him via ATV to the Incident Command Post, where he was reunited with his waiting family.
“He wasn’t prepared to spend a night outside and the temperature was dropping quickly, so getting access to him quickly a wonderful thing,” said Jeppesen.
As the temperatures drop this time of year, Jeppesen said it is a good time to remind people who hike, hunt, or recreate in the wilderness, to be prepared for emergencies.
“It can take hours for a search team to locate you if your lost or injured,” said Jeppesen. “Having tools to start a fire such as a lighter, matches, or a metal match can mean the difference between life and death — especially during this time of year.”
Jeppesen warns that the weather can change quickly.
“It’s cold tonight, and getting colder,” said Jeppesen. “Our subject tonight was able to provide GPS coordinates, and information like that is priceless in the SAR world, and that is really what helped us locate him so quickly.”