When a friend took Stephen and Alyssa Goad’s Bernese Mountain dog, Ohly, for a for a walk with friends and another dog in the parking lot of the Mount Seymour ski resort, the Goads didn’t expect to spend the next two weeks trying desperately to get their beloved canine companion back to them.
Ohly broke free of his leash and took off down the road. When a concerned bystander tried to help, that’s when the ordeal really began. Ohly headed into the woods and from there deeper into the woods, up the mountain and finally Suicide Gully. A steep ravine with treacherous terrain, this was not for the faint-hearted or untrained.
“As soon as Suicide Gully got involved, I knew we couldn’t go down there,” said Goad.
Time to bring in the professionals, Goad contacted volunteer group, North Shore Search and Rescue. Tim Jones of the group was worried that if they didn’t bring the dog down soon they’re wound up having to rescue good-hearted people trying to help bring Ohly home.
“Because of the social media and based on our knowledge of dog rescues, our concern was for public safety, that well-intentioned ill-prepared people would go down and try to rescue the dog,” said Jones.
A helicopter pinpointed where the stranded pooch was and North Shore SnR took over from there.
“(He) was in such good shape, (he) was just playing with our guys — for five hours, some of the fittest guys on our team. It was exhausting,” said Tim Jones, NSR team leader. “It was very close to the point where we thought we weren’t going to be able to catch it and do it safely. We didn’t want to run the dog off a cliff, and we didn’t want to run our guys off a cliff.”
With North Shore volunteers working on foot and by air, Ohly was picked up from the Suicide Gully area on Mount Seymour and brought back to a celebrating crowd Saturday afternoon.
Helmet cam video of December 8, 2012 search/rescue of Ohly the dog in Suicide Gully, Mt. Seymour.
“It’s fantastic. There are no words to really explain it. It’s awesome to have him home. He’s doing really good,” said Alyssa Goad.
The Goads say thanks are owed to North Shore Rescue, Talon Helicopters, the hundreds of volunteers, supporters, the many donors who raised the money for the helicopter and other search expenses and the media who help to get the word out.
Ah, I just love happy ending and Good Samaritans… people who come together and work and help out of the sheer goodness of the hearts. Gives one renewed faith for mankind…