Flagstaff, AZ – Two injured hikers were rescued off Kendrick Mountain and the San Francisco Peaks on Saturday June 27, 2015.
The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office received two separate calls of injured hikers on different mountains outside of Flagstaff. The calls came in less than an hour from each other.
The first incident occurred around 12:35 PM Saturday afternoon. A call was received in the Northern Arizona Regional 911 center requesting assistance for a female hiker who had injured her ankle while hiking on Kendrick Mountain northwest of Flagstaff. A Guardian Medical Ambulance crew, based out of Flagstaff Medical Center in Flagstaff responded as well as a Sheriff’s search and rescue crew.
Prior to the arrival of medics and search and rescue, the 911 center received the call for a hiker with acute mountain sickness on the Humphreys Trail on the San Francisco Peaks at an elevation of 11, 400 feet. The search and rescue crew was diverted to this call on the Peaks.
The hiker, a 58 year old female from Phoenix had hiked to the top of Kendrick Mountain and had injured her ankle about 2/3 the way back down the mountain. Four members of Guardian Medical, along with one Coconino County Search and Rescue volunteer, a United States Forest Service law enforcement officer and one Forest Service fire fighter were able to conduct a liter carry of the hiker off the mountain. She was transported to Flagstaff Medical Center for treatment of a possible fractured ankle.
The second call on the San Francisco Peaks was made by a Sheriff’s Search and Rescue volunteer who was working a hiking event on the mountain. Four volunteers were staged on the Peaks to assist should any search and rescue situations arise.
At about 1:23 PM, the search and rescue volunteer came upon a 22 year old male hiker from Lemon Grove, CA who was suffering from signs of acute high altitude sickness and was very weak and unable to walk. Another search and rescue volunteer, already on the mountain responded and with the help of an off duty paramedic from Mercy Gilbert Hospital in Gilbert, AZ and an EMT in nursing school, provided aid to the victim. The Arizona Department of Public Safety Ranger helicopter based in Flagstaff was dispatched to the Arizona Snowbowl.
The search and rescue crew, paramedic and EMT were able to slowly assist the hiker down the mountain to the point where the victim could be transported by an all-terrain vehicle provided by the Arizona Snowbowl to the waiting Air Rescue crew. The hiker was flown by DPS to the Flagstaff Medical Center, where he was treated and released for mountain sickness.
The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank Guardian Ambulance, the Arizona Department of Public Safety, the United States Forest Service, Arizona Snowbowl and citizens who assisted us with these two rescues.