Grand Canyon National Park "Short Haul" Operations
The thrills didn't end for a group of 16 Colorado River rafters when high water stranded them at the bottom of Grand Canyon National Park. As the accompanying picture shows, their rescue was just as, if not more, thrilling as bucking the river's rapids.
Rangers had to resort to a "short haul" operation to get the 16 off a ledge on one side of the river to a flatter area on the opposite side so they could be picked up by a helicopter. During a short haul operation, the individuals are basically dangled -- with all the requisite safety gear, of course -- from the bottom of a helicopter while moved a short distance.
Most often we hear of short haul operations at Grand Teton National Park, where rangers resort to them quite often to remove injured climbers from the Tetons. As the bottom photo shows, those short hauls can be a tad more exciting than the one employed at the Grand Canyon.
As for those 16 stranded rafters, there's been no word yet this morning on their condition, nor has a list of names been released.