Just before the new year East Canyon Reservoir almost claimed a life on the icy water. An ice-fishing party was on the lake on Saturday the 29th. Around 10 AM a man fell through the ice. The part of the lake the group was on had only just frozen over and the ice was about an inch thick.
One of the fishermen in the group tried to reach his friend, despite being ill-equipped to enter the water. He wasn’t able to reach the man who had fallen through the ice and was only able to pull himself back into the boat. Another friend in the group was able to call for the help of the park rangers. After the victim had already been in the water for 10 minutes, Park Ranger Chris Haramoto was able to pull the man to the boat using a rope. The rescue wasn’t easy. It was clear the victim was losing fine-motor control and had difficulty hanging onto the rope.
Once out of the water a nearby family was able to take the frigid man into their cabin and get his body temperature back up. The victim’s entire body was numb and his clothing had frozen from the frosty temperatures.
Haramoto expressed the need to be prepared for day trips, camping trips, or when fishing on a frozen lake. He was quoted by KSL saying, “Go with a buddy, which he [the victim] did. That probably saved his life.” Haramoto continued saying, “Kind of get a feel for the ice conditions at the places you visit.”
The man was not yet hypothermic and walked away from the incident without serious injury.