A caving excursion ended in a terrifying ordeal for a Canmore, Alta., tourist.
It took 50 people, jackhammers, chisels and a night of hard work to rescue a man who was trapped in a narrow tunnel called the Laundry Chute, part of Rat's Nest Cave in Canmore's Grotto Mountain.
"This was our most serious Rat's Nest Cave rescue ever," wrote Kananaskis Country Public Safety Section on Facebook. "This was another display of the resources and dedicated rescuers that make up our community!"
Emergency responders work to free a man trapped in a Canmore cave. (Photo: Kananaskis Country Public Safety Section/Facebook)
The man was part of a guided excursion into the cave.
“The guide attempted to help him for about an hour. Once that was not successful, the guide went to the surface and raised the alarm," Jeremy Mackenzie, public safety specialist with Kananaskis Country Public Safety, told the Rocky Mountain Outlook.
He was given anti-anxiety medication, along with food and water, and walked away uninjured after the ordeal, reported CTV News.
— Canmore Fire-Rescue (@CanmoreFireRes) April 26, 2016
The situation the tourist found himself in is unusual, but not unheard of.
“It’s extremely rare to have someone stuck underground," Mackenzie told the Calgary Herald.
Albertan Scott Rollans says he became trapped in the same 90-degree bend in the Laundry Chute tunnel a few years ago, but doesn't regret the experience.
"The Laundry Chute wasn't exactly what I would call 'fun' but I emerged from the cave feeling that I had expanded my personal limits in some important ways. I also saw some beautiful and amazing sights on the rest of the tour. I hope this incident doesn't hurt Canmore Cave Tours," Rollans wrote on Facebook.
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