Same people rescued three times in same place

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Despite being advised not to travel in the area, a group of people who became stuck in a rural, wooded area of Siskiyou County near Whitehorse and Pondosa called for rescue three times this month.

“The outcome ... was favorable and we are relieved no one was injured but the series of rescue missions were time-consuming and costly, especially considering the enormous efforts expended by federal, state, and local resources allocated to search for some of the same citizens,” said Search and Rescue coordinator Deputy Mike Burns.

The series of incidents started on the evening of Sunday, April 5 when SCSO dispatch received a 911 emergency call from Jay Woods, a resident of Fall River Mills, reporting that his friend, Katherine Bishop was stuck in a muddy area near the Siskiyou/Shasta County line.

Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue team responded and ultimately rescued Bishop, her two children and a friend with a Sno-Cat vehicle. They were unhurt and later transported to Fall River Mills, the Sheriff’s Office reported.

The following Tuesday, just after midnight on April 9, Bishop called 911 to say she and two friends were again stuck in the same area.

“Bishop evidently got her vehicle out of the predicament from the earlier incident but got stuck in snow and mud on the way out of the area,” the Sheriff’s Office said in a press release. The trio was reportedly out of food and water and needed assistance.

A CHP helicopter responded to assist. The stranded motorists were located and transported back to Fall River Mills.

Four days later, on Saturday, April 13, Woods called to say he and another person were again stuck in the area of Whitehorse Reservoir, which is located near the Siskiyou and Modoc County line.

The Search and Rescue team determined Woods was actually stranded in Modoc County, based on a global position system analysis, but continued their response to the report.

Woods, along with Cole Rainwater, also of Fall River Mills had become stuck while attempting to retrieve the vehicle, the Sheriff’s Office reported.

A CHP helicopter responded but the crew could not locate the Woods, Rainwater, or their vehicles.

On Monday, April 15, the Sheriff’s Office and United States Forest Service Law Enforcement Officers searched the area again to no avail, although they did find shoe impressions in the snow.

Another air search of the area by a CHP helicopter on Tuesday, April 16 was successful and the men were transported to safety, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Burns said it is not a good idea to venture off paved roadways into areas with deep snow, ice and mud. He added that the residents rescued had been advised not to return to the hazardous areas until the weather and ground conditions were safer.