Quick-thinking hikers unravel turbans to help with rescue at Metro Vancouver park
A group of quick-thinking young men were forced to get creative by using their turbans as a makeshift rope to help rescue a pair of hikers in a Metro Vancouver park earlier this month.
Five friends were enjoying their hike at the Lower Falls Trail at Golden Ears Provincial Park when they saw a commotion.
"They said, 'Two people are stuck there. Can you help them? Can you call 911?'" said Kuljinder Singh.
They saw two fellow hikers stranded on a large rock by the edge of a fast-moving river.
Singh said he and his friends did not have cell phone reception but they knew how to improvise.
"We didn't have any other equipment to save them," the 22-year-old said. "We only had our turbans to save them."
So the three wearing turbans unravelled the headdress to make a rope along with their jackets.
"In my Sikh culture, the turban is for that, to help save the life of people who need the help," explained Singh.
The two stranded hikers used the makeshift rope to eventually pull themselves to safety.
Unbeknownst to them, Pitt Meadows Search and Rescue was called and volunteers were already on their way, but by the time crews got there, their services were no longer needed.
"Quite amazed," said search manager Rick Laing. "I'd never heard anything like that or seen anybody doing anything like that. I thought it was quite resourceful – they showed great presence of mind to put something together in such a short time."
Laing also applauds the friends for keeping themselves out of danger by staying away from the water.
He said crews are called to that area by the waterfalls at least once a year and sometimes, the calls are for a recovery effort.
He said it is a good reminder for outdoor enthusiasts to stay away from creeks and rivers with high water levels.
"The water is extremely fast and there is pretty much no chance of survival if you would've fallen in and gone over the waterfalls," he said.
The video of the rescue has now been viewed thousands of times.
"My family and my whole Sikh community feel proud of us," Singh said.
While many people are calling them heroes, he does not see themselves that way.
"In Sikh culture, you have to save their lives, it's not a matter of (being a) hero," he said.