An injured Parker woman and her husband were rescued from Mount Shavano Sunday night by Chaffee County Search and Rescue and REACH air ambulance.
Search and Rescue South received the page at around 8 p.m. to assist a possible injured hiker at an elevation of about 12,800 feet.
The hiker, whom Search and Rescue did not identify, was unable to descend further after summiting the peak at about 5 p.m. Sunday.
Eight Search and Rescue members responded to the Blanks Cabin trailhead.
A two-member team hiked up the trail with a quick-litter, harness system and warm layers for the couple, while remaining team members gathered more gear and started up the trail behind them.
The first team reached the couple around 11:45 p.m. and found them shivering and out of water.
After providing warm layers, water and doing an assessment of the woman, the team found no obvious injury, but she was unable to bear weight descending.
Rescuers decided to request a REACH helicopter to rendezvous at the saddle of Mount Shavano at about 13,400 feet.
The second team assisted the husband down the trail to Blanks Cabin trailhead, while the first team assisted the woman up the trail to the saddle.
She was loaded onto the helicopter and transported at about 1:45 a.m. to Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center in Salida.
The first team then hiked back down to the trailhead.
All rescuers had returned by 5:30 a.m.
Search and Rescue South reminds hikers in the southern Sawatch Range that although daytime temperatures are warm and inviting, overnight temperatures still fall below freezing above treeline.
Snowfields that may have been easy to traverse in the morning or afternoon can quickly turn to ice as the sun sets.
The group advises hikers to always be prepared with extra layers of clothing, food, water and headlamps or flashlights.
Other “10 Essentials” gear recommended by the National Forest Service includes:
- A map, compass and/or GPS.
- Sun protection.
- First aid supplies.
- Matches, lighter and fire starters.
- Repair kit and tools, including duct tape, knife, screwdriver and scissors.
- Emergency shelter such as a tent, space blanket, tarp or bivouac sack.