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Hiker dies on North Vancouver's BCMC trail

The victim was only in his 40s.
District of North Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services says a man in his 40s died while climbing the BCMC trail on Sunday, May 7, 2023.| Cindy Goodman / North Shore News files

A man has died while attempting to climb the BCMC Trail in North Vancouver.

First responders received a 911 call on Sunday afternoon reporting a man in his 40s going into apparent cardiac arrest about 15 minutes in from the Grouse Mountain parking lot.

The call triggered a major response from District of North Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services, BC Ambulance Service, North Vancouver RCMP and North Shore Rescue, all of which went to work on getting the man out safely, said assistant fire chief Scott Ferguson.

Fire and rescue crews, paramedics and North Shore Rescue, including the team’s doctor, started making their way to the man on foot while a Talon helicopter was brought into the area for a quick extraction, if needed.

Bystanders were performing CPR on the man when the professionals arrived and took over with a defibrillator and chest compression machine. They carried him in a stretcher back to the trailhead where more medical professionals were waiting to assist.

“The patient, unfortunately, passed away on scene,” Ferguson said.

District of North Vancouver firefighters are called to the Grouse Grind, BCMC’s more developed sister trail to the top of Grouse Mountain, typically more than 20 times per year. Oftentimes those calls are for exhaustion or ankle injuries but, because of the strenuous nature of the trails, cardiac issues are known to arise and numerous fatalities have happened there over the years.

Ferguson said the response between all of the different agencies was seamless.

“Everything went really well – as good as it could have – for giving this person the best chance that they could have,” he said. “Unfortunately, it was a bad outcome.”

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