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Recent TRSAR Missions - Salome

Salome Canyon Rescue

Photos by Jim McMillion, Greg Reed & Bill Pitterle


On Sunday, 9/12/10 just after noon we received a callout for a 34 year old female injured in Salome Canyon. She was suffering from a painful dislocated shoulder, and possibly some other injuries.

Kathy Baas put out the OneCall callout and organized the mission. A number of TRSAR members, including several rope rescue team members, were down on the lower Salt River training for swiftwater rescue. I took 4 members from the swiftwater training and headed north, while other TRSAR members headed south to Salome Canyon which is on the north side of Roosevelt Lake.

Based on the typical sketchy information we get for remote canyon rescues, we geared up for a vertical rescue out of the middle of the canyon. It was about a 2.5 mile hike in with gear. We found a location directly above the subject with some great rope anchors for a lower/haul system and a belay. We rigged the litter, then sent the litter and attendant over the side. Tonto Basin Fire Dept was with the subject and prepped her for the vertical ascent out of the canyon.

 When she was secure in the litter, we hauled her and the attendant up by rope. The subject was in much pain during the extraction. During the ascent, progress had to be temporarily halted while additional pain meds were administered.

The rope team had to continually reset the haul line due to the restrictions of the location, but after 15 or 20 minutes the subject was up and over the edge of the gorge and then taken to the Ranger helicopter for transport to a hospital. Fortunately, DPS was able to land a helicopter close by.

All personnel involved, including family members of the subject then walked the two and a half miles out of the area and arrived back at the Command Center at sunset.


Thanks to Bill Pitterle and Jim McMillion for the narrative.


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