Search & Rescue: Missions

How to Help / Donate Click on this link if you would like to make a donation to the Park County Search and Rescue Unit.

Missions Click on this link to read about rescue missions conducted so far in 2018.

Volunteers Click on this link to learn more about our volunteers.


The purpose of Park County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Unit (PCSAR) is to organize for, plan for, train for, maintain equipment for, and respond to incidents requiring search and rescue assistance as requested, directed, and authorized by the Sheriff of Park County, Wyoming.  The following is a brief synopsis of our 2019 missions.  There have been no 2020 missions so far.

WY11-01-19, Rumsey Avenue Search:  At 01:25 a.m., on February 3, 2019, Cody Dispatch was advised of an 81 year old Asian female Alzheimer’s patient that had walked away from a Rumsey Avenue address in Cody. Subject was wearing blue pants, black jacket and black shoes.  SAR was mobilized to begin searching for the female.  While responding, a SAR member saw what she thought was the female standing in the common area of Crystal Cove Apartments.  Information was relayed to a Cody Police officer who responded to the area and verified that this was indeed the missing female.  Further SAR response and/or deployment was canceled.

WY11-02-19, Beartooth Lake Rescue: On Friday, March 8, 2019, at 5:27 p.m., the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch Center received a report of an SOS activation of a SPOT satellite tracking device just east of Beartooth Lake near milepost 19 on Highway 212. Search and Rescue was immediately activated. Information was received from the three subjects with the device that they were stuck in a deep drainage and that they had no idea how to get it out or how to get back to the highway.  They reported no injuries. Two ground teams from SAR were deployed with snowmobiles and a tracked rescue vehicle as well as a team from the volunteer Snow Team.  The Snow Team is a group of local snowmobilers that have lent their experience and expertise in response to emergencies in the Beartooth Mountains.  They are closer to the Beartooths than normal SAR resources.  At 7:50 p.m., two members of the Snow Team located the three subjects, freed two of their snow machines and escorted them back to their vehicles parked at the Pilot Peak parking area.  The remaining stuck snowmobile was left at the scene until morning when Snow Team members returned and aided them in freeing the machine.  All other SAR resources were cancelled.

WY11-03-19, Buffalo Bill Dam Recovery: On Sunday, May 5, 2019 Park County SAR was called out at 4:30 p.m. for a 13-year-old boy that had jumped off the back side of the Buffalo Bill Dam and fell 350 feet into the Shoshone River. Five SAR teams were deployed to the area to attempt to locate and recover the body. A water team, a lookout team, a drone team, a support team and a K-9 team were deployed to the dam area and assisted by a Bureau of Reclamation supervisor for access to all the dam facilities. At 6:56 p.m. the water team recovered the body in 8 feet of water and turned it over to the Park County Coroner. All SAR resources were demobilized at 9:00 p.m.

WY11-04-19, Rimrock Ranch Rescue:

On Tuesday, June 11, 2019, a 64-year-old Kentucky woman was safely evacuated from the Rimrock Dude Ranch, 2728 Northfork Highway after she suffered an apparent seizure during a horseback outing.  The victim was on a trail ride approximately ¾ of a mile south of the ranch when she suffered the seizure.  She was not on the horse at the time as the group had stopped for lunch.  The initial call came into the Park County Sheriff’s 911 Communications Center at 10:02 a.m. Search and Rescue (SAR) was immediately mobilized and deployed a ground team to the area. They were accompanied by the Wilderness Medical Team from Cody Regional Hospital.  At 11:17 a.m., rescue personnel were able to reach the victim. The Wilderness Medical Team treated and stabilized her while SAR personnel packaged and transported her to a waiting ambulance via a wheeled stretcher. She was then taken to Cody Regional Hospital.

WY11-05-19, Pahaska Recovery:

At 09:00 a.m. on July 3, 2017, Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was informed of a missing 56 year old female employee from the Pahaska Teepee. She was last seen on July 2, 2019 at 3:00 p.m. and did not report for work that morning at 7:00 a.m.  Employees began a search of the resort.  A sheriff’s deputy was also dispatched to the area.  Her backpack and walking stick was found by employees on shore under the bridge over the Shoshone River east of the resort.   Search and Rescue was activated at 11:15 a.m.  At 11:30 a.m. the victim was discovered by employees in the river across from the Pahaska Trailhead 1/2 mile downstream from the resort apparently deceased.  SAR members were deployed into the river with their swift water pontoon boat.  At 1:30 p.m., the SAR teams were able to reach the victim and evacuate her body to the county coroner.

WY11-06-19, Del Rio Rescue:

At 17:43 p.m. on July 6, 2019, the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch received a report of overturned kayaks and inner tubes on the Shoshone River below 1137 Del Rio Road south of Powell. Initial reports were that 6 total people went into the river and 1 or 2 were still missing.  Search and Rescue was activated and deployed a swift water team.  AIR-1 was also activated.  At 18:15 p.m., a patrol deputy on scene advised that all 6 victims were located and accounted for.  SAR response was canceled.

WY11-07-19, McCullough Peaks Rescue:

On Monday, July 8, 2019, a Florida family was safely evacuated from the Whistle Creek area after they became stuck in a creek drainage in their rented 2019 Polaris side-by-side. The victims, all from Bunnell, Florida, were touring the area when they attempted to traverse a creek drainage and became stuck in deep mud.  The initial call came into the Park County Sheriff’s 911 Communications Center at 6:05 p.m. when they received an activation from an unregistered PLB (Personal Location Beacon) indicating coordinates in the McCullough Peaks area near Whistle Creek. The location was very close to the Big Horn County line. A Park County deputy as well as a deputy from Big Horn County responded. Search and Rescue (SAR) was also mobilized and deployed a ground team with off-road vehicles to the area. The Park County Search and Rescue aircraft was also deployed to search the area.  At 7:15 p.m., the aircraft located the family and guided rescuers to them. At 8:12 p.m., SAR reached the family and began preparations to for evacuation. They were cold and tired but otherwise unhurt. At 8:40 p.m. the family was safely brought to the trail head where they were met by representatives of the ATV rental company who then took them back to Cody. The company also made preparations to remove the side-by-side.

WY11-08-19, Deep Lake Rescue:

At 12:20 p.m. on Saturday, August 8, 2019, Cody Dispatch received a report via cell phone from two 18-year-old hikers who had become lost in the area of Deep Lake in the mountains west of Clark. They were afraid to wander any further. Search and Rescue were activated and deployed three ground teams to hike to the area, one from the west and two from the east. Guardian Medical helicopter was also deployed to the area. Dispatch still had cell contact with the victims. At 14:20 hrs. Guardian located the victims and verified their coordinates. Guardian then secured. At 16:05 hrs. Dispatch advised that the victim’s friends had found them. They all had plenty of food and water and were hiking back to camp. SAR units were recalled.

WY11-09-19, Paul Stock Trail Evacuation:

At 6:55 p.m. on Tuesday, August 20, 2019, Cody Police officers responded to the Paul Stock Nature Trail off Spruce Drive in Cody for a report of a male who had attempted suicide by throwing himself off of a cliff along the trail.  Sheriff’s deputies also responded as the location was ultimately determined to be in the county.   The 19-year-old victim was walking along the trail with his sister when he made some type of suicidal statement to her.  He then jumped off the embankment, near the edge of the trail.  However, where he chose to jump only had a short 8 foot free fall after which there was a steep embankment.  The victim rolled down this embankment ultimately landing near the Shoshone River.  He had numerous scrapes and minor lacerations but no apparent major injuries.  Medical personnel from Cody Regional Hospital were able to reach the victim and treat him however, because of his location, Search and Rescue were summoned to the scene in order to transport him downriver to the 12th Street River Access.   At 7:45 p.m., SAR reached the victim and began preparing him for transport.  At 8:30 p.m., SAR reached the 12th Street Access and transferred him to a waiting ambulance.  He was then transported to Cody Regional for further evaluation.

WY11-10-19, Heart Mountain Evacuation:

On Saturday, August 24, 2019, a 22-year-old Northwest College student was safely evacuated from the summit of Heart Mountain after she severely injured her knee and could not hike down from the mountain top.  The Brazilian student was participating in an organized run/hiking event when the accident happened. The initial call came into the Park County Sheriff’s 911 Communications Center at 11:42 a.m. from a Powell EMT who was working the event, requesting a Search and Rescue response. Three SAR ground teams immediately responded to the Nature Conservancy trail head. After it was determined that the victim was only 15 – 20 feet from the summit, a helicopter from Tip Top Search and Rescue out of Sublette County was requested to evacuate her. At 2:35 p.m., a SAR ground team as well as members of Cody Regional Wilderness Medical Team arrived at her location and began preparations to for evacuation. At 3:15 p.m., the helicopter arrived and performed a reconnaissance flyover of the summit. At that time, the pilot made the decision to land on top of the mountain. At 3:48 p.m., the helicopter landed and maintained power while SAR loaded the victim. She was then flown to the trail head and taken to Powell Valley Hospital by ambulance for further treatment.

WY11-11-19, Jim Mountain Rescue:

On September 14, 2019 at 3:40 p.m., the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was advised of a 59 year old male who had fallen from a horse on the Jim Mountain Trail approximately 3 miles from the trail head. The victim from Richland, Washington was hunting with a group of guided hunters when the accident happened. He suffered an apparent head, neck and back injury. Search and Rescue was immediately deployed as was a Wilderness Medical Team from Cody Regional Hospital. The medical helicopter from Guardian Flight in Cody was also requested. A SAR ground team began to hike into the area with the Wilderness Team. However, Guardian Flight was able to land near the victim. Their medics then hiked to the victim and evacuated him before SAR got to him. SAR teams were then recalled.

WY11-12-19, Marston Creek Rescue:

At 9:01 a.m. on Wednesday, September 25, 2019 the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was notified of an injured hunter via InReach Satellite Communicator in the Marsden Creek/Meadows area in the Thorofare. The area is in the extreme southern end of Park County. A 58 year old hunter from Lansing, Illinois had fallen from his horse and was dragged. He suffered reported head and arm injuries. Search and Rescue was immediately activated and a medical helicopter requested from Classic Lifeguard out of Riverton, Wyoming. SAR assembled ground teams for possible deployment in case the helicopter could not reach the patient. The medical helicopter launched at 9:56 a.m. and evacuated the patient to the Billings Clinic Hospital in Billings, Montana at 11:00 a.m.

WY11-13-19, Woody Creek Evac:

At 8:24 a.m. on September 30, 2019, the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was advised via satellite phone of an injured 46 year old male hunter in the Woody Creek Camp in the Thorofare.  The 46 year old male from Pawleys Island, South Carolina fell from his horse the night before and suffered a 4-inch cut to his head. This morning, he began to lose eyesight in one eye. The location was 24 miles into the Thorofare from the Deer Creek Trail Head. A medical helicopter from Guardian Flight was requested however due to low cloud cover the helicopter could not launch until 12:40 p.m. At 13:55 p.m., the medical helicopter evacuated Hudson to Cody Regional Hospital.

WY11-14-19, Mountain Creek Evac:

On Thursday, October 3, 2019, at 3:00 p.m. the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was advised of a 66 year old male hunter that suffered injuries when he was thrown from his horse at the Mountain Creek Camp in the Thorofare.  The victim from Emmitsburg, Maryland suffered neck and back injuries as a result of the fall. A medical helicopter from Classic Lifeguard in Riverton was dispatched to the scene. At 4:58 p.m., the medical helicopter was able to evacuate the patient to Cody Regional Hospital.

WY11-15-19, J-Bar-9 Ranch Rescue:

At 7:59 a.m. on Saturday, October 5, 2019 Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was advised of a 32 year old female who was bucked off a horse.  The Cody resident suffered an ankle injury about 300 yards off the J-Bar-9 Ranch Road.  Search and Rescue was mobilized to evacuate the patient to a waiting Cody Regional Health Ambulance.  The patient transported to Cody Regional Health Hospital in Cody.

WY11-16-19, Teton Camp Evacuation:

On Friday, October 11, 2019, at 12:17 p.m. the Park County Sheriff’s Dispatch was advised of a 47 year old male hunter that suffered a diabetic illness at the Teton Wilderness Camp in the Thorofare.  The Chesterfield, Missouri man suffered fell ill with diabetic symptoms including loss of consciousness and sight. A medical helicopter from Guardian in Cody was dispatched to the scene. At 1:41 p.m. the medical helicopter was able to evacuate the patient to Cody Regional Hospital.