The Chicago family had the foresight to bring an outdoor survival kit and tell relatives they were going on a hike, authorities said
Authorities announced that a family of five from Chicago were rescued after they were stranded in Colorado’s Greenhorn Mountain amid frigid temperatures on Wednesday.
The Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that the unidentified family, consisting of two adults and three children, were out on a hike in the Greenhorn Trailhead in the morning and were approaching the summit when they were stymied by the altitude and unexpected snow.
As dusk approached and faced with no food and inadequate clothing due to the freezing temperatures, the fatigued family called 911, per authorities.
The sheriff’s office said that its volunteer search and rescue (SAR) team as well as other crews responded to the emergency. Authorities noted that the family had an outdoor survival kit with them and told other relatives of their hike before their trek.
“They also had the awareness to call for help before it became a life-threatening emergency, before it got dark, and before their cell phone died,” the sheriff’s office said.
Authorities said that the search and rescue team was airlifted to the top of North Peak, where they found the family. The stranded persons received food, water and warmth, according to authorities.
“As darkness fell on them, the SAR team members hiked with the family about a mile over the peak where they were met by fire personnel who had hiked from the Bartlett Trailhead,” the sheriff’s office added. “The entire group then hiked the rest of the way to the top of Ophir Creek where emergency vehicles were waiting for them.”
The group was brought safely down the mountain in an operation that took about seven hours and reunited with other family members.
The Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office recommended that hikers or people going on mountain trails become aware of conditions and their experience levels, “especially this time of year when conditions can change rapidly, and the sun sets earlier.”
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PEOPLE reached out to the Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office Monday for additional information about the rescue and the current status of the family’s condition.
According to the United States Forest Service, Greenhorn Mountain's peak reaches 12,347 feet.
The family's rescue came after an "unprepared" hiker was saved earlier this month as he was trying to mount the summit north of Colorado’s Princeton Mountain during a snowstorm, authorities said.
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