Search for missing Chena hiker ends in success

first_imgA search that tapped air and ground resources ended successfully Monday night when an overdue hiker was rescued in the wilderness near Chena Hot Springs Resort, east of Fairbanks. Alaska State Troopers report that 19-year-old Anatoliy Balko was spotted from the air and picked up with a helicopter. Balko works at Chena Hot Springs, and left the resort for a 30 mile hike early Friday.Listen nowA search was initiated when he did not show up for work Sunday morning. Balko, who recently moved to Alaska from Washington, lost the trail and Troopers says he used a makeshift flag to signal rescuers. Chena Hot Springs owner Bernie Karl says he he plans to buy several satellite tracking devices to loan to resort staff and guests headed into the back-country.“With GPS, we’re gonna punch a button and know where you’re at,” Karl said. “And we can get you some help. You don’t know what’s going to happen while you’re out there.”Karl says he also recommend people not travel alone. Karl adds that he’s very appreciative of everyone who turned out for the 2 day search, an effort that included Troopers, as well as University of Alaska Fairbanks unmanned aerial vehicle operators, wilderness search and rescue and search dog team volunteers.last_img read more

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