Deer Mountain (KRBD file photo)

The Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad helped three hikers off of Deer Mountain Thursday night after one of them slipped and fell on the trail, injuring his back.

The group activated a locator beacon they had with them. KVRS Incident Commander Jerry Kiffer said that an on-duty officer was notified of the hikers from the Alaska State Troopers at 8:00 p.m.

Kiffer said the hikers were on the portion of the trail between a rockslide and a lookout, at the bottom of the switchbacks.

So we sent a team up with a, what we call a trail wheel, which is a stokes litter on a single wheel,” he said.

Everyone was off the trail by 4 a.m. this morning. A Ketchikan Fire Department ambulance was waiting for the injured man.  

Kiffer said the incident is a good example of how helpful a locator beacon can be. 

The beacons are available to the public throughout town. 

But you know, the ability to take an emergency beacon with you and can trigger (it) when you have an emergency … that’s what that program is all about,” Kiffer said. 

You can pick up beacons from the Alaska State Troopers, the Ketchikan Public Library and the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau.

Raegan Miller is a Report for America corps member for KRBD. Your donation to match our RFA grant helps keep her writing stories like this one. Please consider making a tax-deductible contribution at