A group of Vancouver Island teenagers has been rescued after spending two nights stranded in the snow on a remote logging road near Lake Cowichan.
Three males and two females had planned to do some four-wheeling on the McLure Mainline on Monday, but became stranded when the truck got stuck in the deep snow.
After spending the first night out without any blankets,candles or heaters to keep warm, their truck finally ran out of gas on Tuesday, so one of the teens walked approximately 17 kilometers back to his home in Caycuse for help.
He eventually reached his family home, where he and his father then tried and failed to drive back to the truck on their own. So they called in the local search and rescue team, which was also unable to reach the stranded teens.
Snowmobilers called in
Finally late Tuesday night the local snowmobile association was called in to help in the rescue.
Mid Island Sno-blazers vice president Russell Janssen says he got the call around 11 p.m. PT Tuesday and they soon had a team on the road.
"By the time we got out there it was probably 2:30 Wednesday morning," he said.
"Probably close to a foot and a half of snow and fresh snow on top of that, which made for trucks trying to go up, even trucks with chains, would've had a tough time making it to the truck where it was at."
They found the two young women first - they had tried to walk out.
"They were cold and wet and they were sure glad to see us," he said.
It took three more hours to reach the other two remaining young men, who had stayed with the truck. By the time they got everyone back to safety it was past 7 a.m.
"I was late to work, but we don't like to leave people out there," joked Janssen.
All the teens are expected to be okay, but Janssen says their story should remind others to always be prepared when heading out into wilderness areas.