Smithfield hiker safely rescued in Willard Canyon

WILLARD — A 36-year-old Smithfield man was safely rescued Wednesday night after becoming stranded while hiking in Willard Canyon. The man called 911 at approximately 6:30 p.m. to report he had run out of water and was exhausted, near Black Rock Peak.

Box Elder County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Dale Ward said the Willard Fire Department and Box Elder Search and Rescue personnel responded to the canyon and began hiking toward a known GPS coordinate obtained from the 911 call. They were able to spot the stranded hiker but determined that it would be difficult to reach him and get him down before sunset.

A helicopter from the Utah Department of Public Safety was requested. They were able to respond and successfully hoist the man off the mountain.

The helicopter landed at a nearby church parking lot to drop the hiker off. He was treated by Willard First Responders and was not injured.

Ward said Wednesday’s rescue is a reminder to everyone to enjoy the outdoors safely. He recommended having plenty of water, prepare for the elements, tell someone where you are going, and when you are expected to return. Also, do not deviate from that plan without letting someone know.

Emergency crews also advise hikers and others that cell phones are great to have but do not rely on them for navigation or phone service in an emergency.

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