Injured hiker rescued from North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park

Sep 18, 2023, 9:30 AM

helicopter responds to missing hiker near Grand Canyon National Park air-vac lands near Grand Canyon helicopter dashboard on air-vac helicopter on rocks near Kanab Creek

PHOENIX — A hiker was rescued from the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park last week after he was injured in a fall and couldn’t continue, authorities said.

The 63-year-old man was on a multiday hike with four friends who reported his location before leaving him alone Friday, the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue said.

The group was backpacking along Kanab Creek when the man fell and suffered a traumatic injury to his shoulder around 2 p.m.

How was the hiker’s situation reported?

Authorities received a call for help around 6 p.m. from someone using an Apple device through a satellite connection.

“Once contact for help using the Apple device was confirmed by the hiking group, the other four hikers left with the Apple device and continued on their backpacking adventures — leaving the injured hiker behind alone,” Search and Rescue said in a Facebook post.

A Search and Rescue team, as well as an Arizona Department of Public Safety helicopter from Kingman equipped with a medic and rescue specialist, was sent to the location provided.

Due to the limited landing area, the helicopter landed about a quarter-mile from the hiker. Once crews located the man, they took him to the helicopter, which flew him to a Flagstaff hospital.

How long had the group been hiking?

The group of friends had been backpacking 3-4 days and had another 3-4 days to go, according to the post.

Officials said the group didn’t follow the recommended protocol when somebody needs assistance in a remote area.

“Search and Rescue encourages everyone to never leave someone behind alone and whenever possible, to stay with them and ensure they are rescued before continuing on their journey,” the post said.

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Injured hiker rescued from North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park