Moose hunters rescued by military plane, RCMP in northeast Saskatchewan

Three hunters are now at home and recovering with some hypothermia symptoms after a Canadian military plane was called in to help rescue them while hunting.

All Yorkton-area men escape with hypothermia symptoms

RCMP and ambulance teams arrive on scene to aid stranded hunters in the Hudson Bay, Sask., area. (RCMP)

Three Saskatchewan moose hunters are now at home and recovering with some hypothermia symptoms after they became stranded and were rescued with help from RCMP, Conservation Officers, Search and Rescue crews and a Canadian military plane.

The hunters were stranded northwest of Hudson Bay, Sask.

All three men are from the Yorkton area. As part of their hunt, they were using two four-wheel ATVs and an Argo amphibious vehicle. They tried crossing a swamp using the Argo on Thursday, but didn't make it.

Hudson Bay is about 210 kilometres north of Yorkton.

The hunters texted their families saying they were wet, couldn't start a fire, and needed help.

Argo is low on power- RCMP say this is the only word they received from the hunters, in a text message received during the search Thursday night.

RCMP and Conservation Officers got the call to help the group at about 7:15 p.m. CST on Thursday. They found the abandoned ATVs, but they couldn't pass through the swampy area. RCMP said there was also around 50 centimetres of fresh snow in the area and the swamp was covered with a thin layer of ice.

The officers attempted to contact the group and only received one text, saying the Argo was low on power. 

RCMP Search and Rescue crews were deployed to the area at 5 a.m. Friday. Later that morning, at 9:30 a.m., RCMP called in for help from a military plane — a C-130 Hercules out of Winnipeg — to help find the group and get their exact location from the air. Armed forces members found the group, dropped down a radio, and gave the GPS coordinates to search crews on the ground. RCMP say the radio allowed the hunters to maintain contact while people continued searching for them.

By 3:30 p.m. on Friday, the group had been found and rescued by RCMP members and local residents. All three men, who are in their 30s, are believed to have suffered minor injuries related to exposure and hypothermia. Environment Canada data in the area shows temperatures dipped down to approximately -15.8 C between Thursday night and Friday morning.
The three stranded hunters are seen in this photo taken by Canadian Armed Forces members aboard a Lockheed C-130 Hercules airplane that was called in from Winnipeg to locate the group. (Canadian Armed Forces)