A skier was airlifted off Donner Pass on Friday around 1pm after injuring himself while skiing a shoot in the backcountry with 3 friends. Unable to continue, the group called 911 and a California Highway Patrol H-20 helicopter was dispatched and the injured skier was hoisted to safety.
Here is an explanation of the rescue detailed on CHP – Valley Division Air Operations page:
“Auburn, Calif. – On January 27, 2017 a 1:00 p.m. California Highway Patrol Helicopter 20 (H-20) was requested for a Search and Rescue (SAR) by Grass Valley CalFire dispatch. A group of four people were backcountry skiing when one of them injured their leg. Using a cell phone they called 9-1-1 and requested help. They were found near Flora Lake which is between Boreal Ski Resort and Donner Lake at approximately 7,500 feet in elevation.
The victim said they had started their day at the Donner Pass Rest Area, hiked up the mountain for some backcountry skiing, and injured his lower leg while skiing down a shoot between two cliffs. Unable to continue any further, the group called for help. H-20 was on patrol when they got the call. H-20 landed and picked up a third crew member, Sergeant Yops, from Truckee CHP Office. Using the hoist, they placed him next to the victim. Sergeant Yops placed the victim a hoist rescue harness and prepared him for extraction.
H-20 performed a hoist rescue and brought the injured party back to the Command Post where a Truckee Fire Department ambulance was standing by to transport the patient to a local hospital.”
[images from CHP – Valley Division Air Operations]