PPToday at 13:00 North Shore Rescue was tasked by BC Ambulance (BCAS) dispatch to respond to a medical rescue on Hollyburn Mountain near Cypress Bowl. The young female subject was hiking with her parents on the Hollyburn Peak trail when she sustained a lower leg injury. Unable to proceed, the parents called 911.


NSR SAR managers were able to quickly ID her location – just below the summit of Hollyburn – from the cell coordinates provided by BCAS dispatch. Given the variable cloud ceiling and her location, NSR initiated a two-pronged response with ground and air support. Ground members accessed the trail via 4×4 and were able to access the subject. The subject was assessed by NSR members and her leg was splinted.

Concurrently Talon Helicopters pilot Kelsey Wheeler, responded with our helicopter rescue team from the Capilano Search and Rescue Station. After a quick recon flight, the subject was evacuated from the trail via a 200 foot longline. Shortly after the completion of this rescue evolution, NSR received a mutual aid request from Sunshine Coast Search and Rescue for a medical rescue near Langdale.


A NSR flight team, including an advanced life support paramedic, immediately deployed to the scene with Talon Helicopters. Langdale Fire Department, Gibsons BCAS, and SAR were already on scene with the subject and worked to secure a helicopter landing zone for our flight team.

The subject in this tasking had fallen between 20 and 30 feet through a waterfall and sustained various injuries including a leg fracture and hypothermia. Upon staging and a recon flight,  the NSR paramedic was longlined to the scene where he assessed and treated the patient. Subsequent to  the patient being stabilized, he and his companion were longlined out of the steep canyon to waiting BCAS paramedics. This location called for a 200 foot longline into heavily wooded and steep terrain. A very technical rescue, which would have been an all night stretcher carry without HETS.

It was a pleasure to work with Langdale/Gibsons Fire, Gibsons Station BCAS Paramedics, and Sunshine Coast Search and Rescue on this call. A solid team effort and shared resources which resulted in the best possible outcome for this patient.