Sheriff’s Office, SUU aviation respond to hikers stuck in Kanarraville Falls area

Southern Utah University aviation program helicopter assists in locating missing hikers in Kanarraville Falls, Utah, Oct. 25, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Iron County Sheriff's Office, St. George News / Cedar City News

CEDAR CITY — The Iron County Sheriff’s Office responded Thursday evening to the Kanarraville Falls area after two people failed to return from their hike.

This 2016 photo shows Kanarra Creek flowing through the slot canyon on the way to Kanarraville Falls, near Kanarraville, Utah, May 2016 | Photo by Spencer Ricks, St. George News

According to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office, Cedar Communications received the call regarding the hikers at approximately 9:50 p.m.

“We were advised a 46-year-old male and 45-year-old female had left at approximately 1 p.m. to hike from the top of the Kanarra Falls area to the bottom,” Iron County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Del Schlosser said in the statement. “This area includes multiple repels with ropes to complete.”

Schlosser said family and friends contact law enforcement after the two had not arrived back at the vehicle they had waiting for them in Kanarraville.

Deputies from the Iron County Sheriff’s Office responded to the area to assess the information and begin to make a plan of where to look for the two hikers. The Southern Utah University aviation program was contacted and responded to the area with the Sheriff’s Office tactical flight deputy. With the use of night vision, they were able to locate the man and woman in a slot canyon within a short amount of time.

Iron County Sheriff’s Office Ropes Rescue team was contacted, and members were flown into an area close to the two hikers. Team members hiked into the area and found both of them in good condition. It was discovered they had rapelled into a hole, and due to removing their rope after their descent, they had no way to get out of the area.

At the time of the press release, search and rescue members were still working to bring both hikers back up to the top of the canyon and hike out of the area.

“This is a good reminder of telling people where you are going and what time you will be back,” Schlosser said, adding that backcountry hikers should be prepared to spend the night if needed and be aware of drastic changes in temperature this time of year.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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