Two hikers rescued near Divide Lake early Sunday morning

Pair of hikers rescued

UPDATE: 12:00 p.m.

Central Okanagan Search and Rescue received the call from the stranded hikers around 9:30 p.m. Saturday night, who were lost on a hike in Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park. The conditions were dramatically different at the higher elevation, which led to the pair in need of rescue.

"The conditions are often quite different up in the mountains than they are in the valley in the shoulder season," says Brian Stainsby, SAR Manager. "The hikers were not prepared for the change in weather conditions, which led to the need of our assistance."

The hikers were found under the cell tower by Divide Lake when COSAR arrived. The pair was picked up in a Utility Terrain Vehicle, and were then transported back to their vehicles.

The shoulder season can make it difficult for the deployment of Search & Rescue vehicles, due to the varying conditions. SAR teams have adapted to the issue, and have numerous alternatives for each situation.

"The entire trail is about 10-12 kilometres, but there wasn't enough snow for a snowmobile until about three kilometres in, so we couldn't use them," says Stainsby. "Our UTV took the crew most of the way, but the snow drifts got quite high near the end of the trail, so our crew had to walk the remaining kilometre. And if our UTV didn't work for us, we always have a helicopter company on standby."

If you are lost or stranded and in need of Search & Rescue's services, they will be notified if you call 9-1-1.

ORIGINAL: 8:46 a.m.

A pair of hikers were rescued near Divide Lake in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The two hikers were located and brought back to safety around 2:30 a.m.

"The hikers were brought back using the proper health and safety measures for our current situation," says Brian Stainsby, search manager for Central Okanagan Search and Rescue. "They were administered masks, and our team wore our own PPE as well.

COSAR will provide more details on the situation later in the day.

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