Released by: Deputy Kyle Joye – Assistant Search and Rescue Coordinator

Date/time: 9/18/21 at 10:30 A.M.

Location: Camp Lake in the Three Sisters Wilderness


32 year old male – Bend

30 year old female – Bend

On 9/18/21 at about 10:30 AM, the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office was advised of two hikers needing assistance at Camp Lake near Pole Creek Trailhead outside of Sisters, Oregon.  Deschutes County 911 had received a report from Garmin GPS emergency response and they had received an emergency alert at this location from a Garmin GPS receiver.

Emergency response was able to make contact with the user who reported a weather system had moved in overnight and the user along with a hiking partner were now wet, cold and needing assistance back to the trailhead.  At the time of this call, a United States Forest Service (USFS) Law Enforcement Officer was also notified and responded to the area.  A Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Assistant SAR Coordinator was able to make text message contact with the subjects and learned they were uninjured, but would not be able to safely return to the trailhead without assistance.

14 DCSO SAR volunteers responded to the trailhead including ground teams, medical teams and a horse team.  The teams responded up the trail from Pole Creek Trailhead arriving at the patients at 3:40 PM. Upon arrival, SAR teams found the victims were not in need of medical care, although they would need assistance with basic care (food, water, dry clothing) prior to hiking down the trail. Teams noted at the time of arrival at the subjects camp, temperatures were in the low 30’s with mixed snow and rain falling.

At 4:40 PM SAR teams began escorting the subjects down the trail where they decided to meet with friends and proceed home from the trailhead by personal vehicle.  SAR personnel and the subjects arrived back at the trailhead at 7:30 PM.  The Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the United States Forest Service Law Enforcement Division for their help during this mission.

The Sheriff’s Office would like to remind anybody hiking during this season that conditions can change rapidly and to be prepared for various temperatures and rain/snowfall.  Additionally, keep a close eye on weather forecasts for areas in and around your recreation area.

The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office is a full service agency that oversees the adult jail, provides patrol, criminal investigations, civil process and search and rescue operations. Special units include SWAT, Marine Patrol, ATV Patrol, Forest Patrol, along with five K9 teams. Founded in 1916 and today led by your duly elected Sheriff L. Shane Nelson, the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office serves over 200,000 residents in Deschutes County. The agency has 259 authorized and funded personnel, which includes 191 sworn employees who provide services to the 3,055 square miles of Deschutes County.