Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Harrowing rescue on steep canyon walls off Tunnel Drive

I drove to the west end of Canon City this morning to do some birding but when I got there I saw that a rescue was starting on the steep canyon walls above Tunnel Drive on the other side of the river from where I was located. The top photo gives a good view of what I could see without the use of optics--note the white arrows pointing that are pointing at the young woman who was the subject of the rescue. Though I was several hundred yards away I had close up views through my 45X spotting scope lens. And since I photograph birds, flowers, mountains, just much of what I observe I started photographing this rescue by our local Canon City Fire District.
I was fearful on several occasions as I watched the firemen climb without safety ropes. Once the lead fireman in the red helmet got to her he started cutting a large cactus that is shown in front of her in the top pic so she could late come down past it. Then other firemen climbed to the top then threw a safety rope down to be attached to the victim. All of that took more than an hour.

I am not posting photos that show the young woman's face clearly--she climbed without proper gear and I am sure had a frightful as well as embarrassing time. I will share all the photos with the Fire Department if they are interested in using them for their action review.
The rest of the photos here show the rest of the rescue as the lead fireman got the victim down and eventually put in a rescue basket for the trip down.
Again look for the white arrows pointing to the fireman who are carrying the victim in the rescue basket down this steep canyon.
In the bottom pic they are almost down to the trail/service road that goes up Tunnel Drive. The firemen with the victim in the rescue sled are to the right of the white arrows. Further to the right are two more Fire Department members waiting for them to get down. Glad this was successful. The firefighters did a wonderful job of rescuing this young woman. SeEtta