Shortly before 7:00 p.m. on April 7, 2011, PMR was requested to assist on a mission that involved four lost snowboarders in the area of Sand Canyon and Little Zig Zag Canyon outside the Timberline Ski Area boundary on Mt. Hood.
By the time the first several PMR members arrived at Timberline Lodge, one subject had been rescued by ski patrol. Patrollers had caught up with him; warmed him up, got him out to the Glade Trail. They returned to Timberline Lodge by snow cat.
Two other snowboarders were reported to be close to the Kiwanis Camp trailhead and another snowboarder and a ski patroller were in Sand Canyon somewhere below the cable (warning sign). The two near the Kiwanis Camp made it out on their own. The ski patroller and his exhausted subject were reported to be unable to proceed.. By using the boarder’s smart phone to dial 911, their location was determined. They were at about 4000 feet in Sand Canyon. A PMR team deployed from the Glade Trailhead (about .75 miles ) at about 10:00 p.m. PMR made contact with the pair a little before 11:00 p.m. With some food, hot tea and snowshoes for the two they headed back out. All personnel were out by 2:30 am.
PMR urges skiers and snow boarders to stay in ski area boundaries unless they are fully prepared for back country travel. Adequate preparation includes knowledge of the area, a map and compass and navigation skills. Back country travelers should be prepared to stay out over night, even if they only intend to be out of bounds for a short time.