Emergency beacon false alarm in Hyalite area triggers Search and Rescue response

Posted at 7:24 PM, Dec 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-05 16:18:42-05

BOZEMAN — An emergency beacon false alarm on Wednesday sent Gallatin County Search and Rescue to a climbing destination known as The Fat One in Hyalite Canyon.

Gallatin County dispatch receive the emergency beacon notification around 10:52 a.m. Wednesday, according to a press release. The beacon was registered to a 52-year-old Seattle woman.

The woman's family was able to provide detailed information about where the woman was climbing. The press release said ski teams and helicopters were deployed to quickly locate the woman and her climbing partner, a 69-year-old man, since their condition was not known at the time.

Rescuers located the woman's car at the Grotto Falls trailhead and found her and the man at 1:10 p.m. "in good health and spirits," the release said.

The woman told Search and Rescue she didn’t notice emergency confirmation messages to her beacon until well after rescuers were on their way and pushed the cancellation button shortly before she and the man were located.

The Gallatin County Sheriff's Office said providing detailed information to another party before heading into the backcountry, as in Wednesday's incident, is a "huge help" in an emergency situation.