A 42-year-old Lethbridge man and his 12-year-old daughter were pulled from Slocan Lake Monday evening nearly two hours after their kayak tipped over in a windstorm.
They were treated for hypothermia and released from hospital.
Slocan Lake RCMP say around 7:45 p.m. they received several reports from witnesses on shore who saw a single flare set off on the west side of the lake directly opposite New Denver.
“Just prior to this, the same witnesses shockingly saw two individuals head out on a kayak across the lake during a massive wind storm comprised of gale force winds,” Cst. Kent Kryzanowski said in a news release.
The witnesses kept an eye on the pair who capsized in the frigid water. The New Denver fire department launched its rescue boat, and with the help of several private boats, searched the lake as the windstorm persisted and darkness fell.
Almost two hours later, they heard a whistle and found the pair clinging to their kayak. They were pulled from the water and taken to hospital in New Denver.
“Both individuals were lucky to be alive,” Kryzanowski said.
He added it was the second call RCMP and fire personnel in New Denver had that day of kayakers in distress after capsizing in the lake due to high winds.
He didn’t give details of the other incident, but said in both cases everyone was wearing life jackets.
“Even though these individuals were properly equipped for an emergency on the water, RCMP would like to emphasize that people reconsider their decision to kayak, canoe, or boat on the lake during extremely hazardous weather conditions,” Kryzanowski said.
He commended the fire department personnel and good Samaritans who “without hesitation” joined in the search for the kayakers in distress.