June 30, 2016 - 7:30 PM
THOMPSON-OKANAGAN - With Canada Day creating a long weekend this year, search and rescue teams are preparing for a busy weekend.
Typically the Canada Day weekend is the busiest period of time for the province’s search and rescue teams Kamloops Search and Rescue manager Alan Hobler says.
“You tend to get people who haven’t been out earlier so they’re not prepared,” he says.
The first long weekend of the summer tends to bring out people new to outdoor sports. While the May long weekend can be popular, its cooler and wetter weather can keep people from planning to be out in nature, Hobler notes.
“The July long weekend is usually hotter and people go to water,” Hobler says.
It’s the water activities that tend to get people in trouble. While most people are scared of cougars or bears in the wild, Hobler says the number of dangerous animal encounters pale in comparison to incidents on the water.
“People tend not to be scared of the water,” he says.
That’s why his number one tip for people is to use a lifejacket or personal floatation device while on the water.
For those heading into the backwoods, another important tip is to leave a trip plan with someone responsible.
He also recommends going to the AdventureSmart website for planning tools and more type for trips into nature.
This year started off slow for the Kamloops team, but the last couple months are well above average, possibly due to the warmer spring, Hobler says.
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