A German tourist’s hiking trip on Cape Town’s Platteklip Gorge trail took a dramatic turn when he suffered a severe ankle injury, prompting a complex night rescue operation.
Wilderness rescuers lauded for saving German hiker on Platteklip Gorge trail
The 64-year-old hiker’s misfortune began in the late afternoon when the hiker, navigating the trail, misstepped and injured his ankle.
Unable to walk, he attempted to drag himself down the path before being spotted by a family from Limpopo. Their quick action in calling the emergency number set the rescue in motion.
Rescuers, including volunteers and professionals from the Wilderness Search and Rescue (WSAR) and the City of Cape Town Law Enforcement, were dispatched to the scene.
The injured hiker was located after a team of rescuers and paramedics were transported via the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway and then hiked to his position.
David Nel, a WSAR spokesperson, commended the rescuers for their relentless effort and positive spirit, essential in such demanding rescue operations.
“These incredible teams of rescuers provide a critical and life changing service in some of the most demanding environments, with smiles on their faces,” Nel said.
The injured tourist was carefully treated on-site before being placed on a specially designed stretcher by Cascade Rescue Company, equipped to handle the rugged mountain terrain.
The rescue, involving more than twenty personnel, turned into a five-hour ordeal as they navigated the steep and technically challenging sections of the trail in the dark.
Adding to the difficulty, rain began to fall midway, making the descent even more treacherous.
Despite these challenges, the team successfully transported the hiker to a waiting ambulance, concluding the rescue operation at 00:30.