Coast Guard rescues two hunters on Mount Kelly, Alaska

A Coast Guard C-130 Hercules aircraft forward-looking infrared camera captures an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter flying over Mount Kelly, north of Kotzebue, Alaska, Sept. 24, 2020. Both assets searched for two hunters that were stuck on Mount Kelly for six days. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Air Station Kodiak)

A Coast Guard C-130 Hercules aircraft forward-looking infrared camera captures an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter flying over Mount Kelly, north of Kotzebue, Alaska, Sept. 24, 2020.  (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Air Station Kodiak)

KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard rescued two hunters Thursday that were stranded for six days on Mount Kelly, north of Kotzebue, Alaska.

A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak C-130 Hercules aircraft crew deployed from the air station’s Forward Operating Location in Kotzebue and flew over Mount Kelly to locate the hunters and assess the weather ahead of an MH-60 Jayhawk crew deployed from Forward Operating Location Kotzebue to pick up the stranded hunters.

Watchstanders in the 17th District command center in Juneau received the initial request from Alaska State Troopers for an agency assist at noon. The stranded hunters reported 70 mph winds, which prevented a commercial transporter from picking the hunters up.

“Having the C-130 on scene helped us out a lot,” said Lt. Benjamin Wolhaupter, a pilot for the case. “They were able to find the hunters’ exact location and give us the coordinates.”

The two hunters were dropped off at Kotzebue Airport.

On scene weather at the time of rescue included an air temperature of 25 degrees, 30 mph winds and 17 mile visibility.

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