Successful rescue operation in dark in Jonkershoek
A dedicated team of professionals and volunteers from Wilderness Search And Rescue (WSAR) responded to Jonkershoek late on Tuesday, after three visiting students reported that they were stuck high up on a mountain peak in the reserve.
The three foreign exchange students, all in their early twenties, had started their hike to the Jonkershoek Pieke early on Tuesday morning.
They started up Langrivier Kloof and after reaching the summit battled to find their intended descent path. After two failed attempts to descend down Venster Kloof and Nerina Kloof, they realised that they were not going to be able to get down before dark and decided to call for help.
Rescues were immediately dispatched to the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve.
Setting out in the dark, the rescue team hiked up the trail in search of the stranded hikers.
The lost hikers were able to describe their position to the approaching rescue teams, helping to narrowing the search area.
The gentleman and two ladies were located soon after midnight, and the team slowly guided them back to the start of the hike.
Although tired, the three visiting students were reported to be in good spirits and very grateful to have been safely assisted down the mountain.
All hikers and rescuers were safely off the mountain at 05h30 on Wednesday morning.
A spokesperson for Wilderness Search And Rescue (WSAR), David Nel: “Our teams have already responded to five incidents this week.
In four other incidents several people were also rescued.
On Monday evening team members made their way to Table Mountain after a group of three hikers reported that they were lost near Judas Peak. Rescuers guided the group back to vehicles parked near the huts on the back table and they were driven down the mountain.
On Tuesday afternoon rescuers assisted a 72 year-old hiker struggling with cramps in Platteklip Gorge. After being attended to by a paramedic, he was helped up to the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway and transported down the mountain in the cable car.
While teams were assisting the elderly hiker, a second call for help was received from a lone 41-year-old hiker on the India Venster hiking trail. He was suffering severe cramps and was unable to continue. The patient was hoisted from the mountain into the Western Cape Department of Health & Wellness EMS / Air Mercy Service (AMS) rescue helicopter and flown to a nearby landing zone.
Rescuers were dispatched to Maclear’s Beacon at 17h30 on Tuesday after a group of three visitors reported that they were lost. The team quickly located the foreigners and safely guided them back the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway.
Soon after the Maclear’s Beacon call, rescuers were alerted to the Jonkershoek incident.
“We’ve had a few really busy months, and while we urge all wilderness enthusiasts to take care, we want to remind everyone that there are teams of dedicated rescuers around the Western Cape ready to assist anyone who find themselves in trouble while outdoors,” Nel said.
Members of the public are reminded to save and share the WSAR emergency contact number, 021 937 0300