SAR Recovery on the Poudre, Sat 17th - Mountain Buzz

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Old 07-17-2004   #1
holley's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 186
SAR Recovery on the Poudre, Sat 17th

Hey all,

Just want you to be aware that there is a body recovery going on in the Poudre today - and maybe tomorrow, too, if the water stays this high. A woman hit the guard rail with her motorcycle at Super Collider in the Upper Narrows yesterday afternoon and went into the river and they were not able to find her by nightfall. Frenchy, Pagel, Evan, Adrian, and Leif ran Upper thru Lower in their boats to help look since the rescue teams had not had anyone in kayaks thru there to help, but they were not able to find her.

Anyhow, the sherriff told us last night that they would be shutting down all valves early this morning to lower the level to help with the recovery. And even though the Big South is off, the Poudre is a muddy 3 feet on the rock. So if you are heading up, you may want to stay clear of the Narrows (they may not let you in if you aren't with rescue personnel), and if you are floating the Mish runs, I'd say keep your eyes open and notify someone on the road immediately if you see her.

Her husband was up there last night looking crushed. Apparently he ran down the river following her till she disappeared. It totally broke my heart to see him. Send thoughts and prayers of healing and closure his way....and hope they find her today.


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Old 07-19-2004   #2
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 245
good thoughts sent, that's gotta be the worst!! I have ridden that stretch on my cycle at night and I was so slow!!! all I could think about was the raging water thirty feet below and just that itty bitty railing... day makes it feel safer, but...
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Old 07-19-2004   #3
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1
SAR Recovery on Poudre

Greetings Fellow Boaters,

Tony Falbo here. For those of you who don't know me, my wife Kellie and I live next door to Jeff and LB in Poudre Park. We are also friends with Frenchy, Holley, Pagel, JJ, David L and many others who frequent the Canyon.

Kellie and I are heavily involved with the Poudre Canyon Fire and EMS and I spent most of the weekend with LC SAR on the recovery attempt. I figured an update would be in order.

First, I would like to thank several of you for your assistance in looking for the motorcycle rider. Friday night Frenchy, Holley and Pagel were floating past my house when LB told them about the accident in the narrows. They agreed to go up to there with me to float that stretch to get a waterline view. Unfortunately we were unable to locate the body.

Holley and Frenchy then assembled two teams of kayakers to work with SAR on Saturday and Sunday. The Sat team was Frenchy, Aron and Marty. They searched the narrows from just below the crash site to Steven's Gultch. They conducted a professional style search and acted in a professional maner. I have to say they greatly impressed SAR with their professionalism and their boating abilities. Kudos

The Sunday team of equal merit consisted of Frenchy, JJ and Ethan and joined by USFS ranger Ryan. They searched from Steven's to Mish. Thank you all for taking time from your weekend to help with the search.

The search was officially called off at 1400 on Sunday. The body has not yet been found. You all need to be aware that there is a person in the river somewhere between Super Collider and anywhere downstream from there. Please keep a look out for her. Here are a couple of simple quidelines to follow if you find her:

If you come accross the body do not attempt to recover it yourself. Take carefull note of the location and contact me or SAR immediately. If possible, leave someone at the location in case she becomes dislodged and moves further downstream. Be advised that she will probably look really bad. Protect your own mental well being as well as others who may be present or passing by. Try not to make a big scene.

Also take note of any clothing items you may find on the river. She was wearing black chaps with reflective tape on the knees, a black shirt and boots. If you find any clothing like this, please grab it and take carefull note of location and contact me or SAR.

Be safe out there and enjoy life! See you on the River.
Tony Falbo
Assistant Chief, Poudre Canyon Fire Protection District, Sta. 1

Larimer County Search and Rescue
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Old 07-20-2004   #4
Steamboat, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 464
Hey all,

Reverend...Thanks for taking the time to post this update, and for all your kind words. I am very glad we were able to lend a hand and wish we could have done a lot more. You guys did a great job as well, thanks for all your support.

It was an emotional weekend, seeing victim's husband and brother-in-law on Fri just after the accident, and then probing the Lower Narrows with her family and friends on the road-side bank watching our every move. I can not begin to imagine how this woman's family and friends are doing right now, how devastated and empty they must feel. My heart goes out to each one of them. Times like these you realize just how fragile our lives are, and how quickly each one of us can go and be gone forever.

Perhaps, the one positive thing that came out of this was the start of talk with the SAR/Sherriffs Office about teaming together on the river when they need help. There are certainly boaters in the area who are willing and able to help out and until this weekend, they just didn't know that. I think having a solid crew in kayaks, in certain situations, could make a real difference.

I'm with safe out there and enjoy life!!!
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Old 07-21-2004   #5
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 16
Reverend, thanks for taking the time to post here.

Props to the SAR and kayakers that assisted in the recovery efforts.

Is there any new informaton on the recovery? (Sorry if this has already been publicized, I don't watch TV or suscribe to a paper)
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Old 07-22-2004   #6
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1965
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 35
D_T, the update is that she has not been found. We are hoping that nature and the varying levels will release her soon. I am on the Dive Rescue Team, and we'll be first to be paged out as we have the equipment for safe water recovery. In the meantime folks, if you do see evidence of her or her clothing in the river, please get to Mish or Poudre Park or Ted's right away and call 911. That will get you County dispatch who will make sure to page out the proper resources. Even if you are not sure, don't wait till the next day when it begins to bug you. That could mean movement from the last seen point, and make it more difficult.
Thanks again to all who helped-
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