Chalk up another big victory for the often forgotten Teller County Search and Rescue team that typically handles about 40 missions a year.
A joint rescue effort by the Teller and El Paso County search and rescue teams may have saved the life of a Colorado Springs cyclist who crashed and got disoriented following an apparent accident on an advanced biking trail on Sept. 29.
Alicia Jakomait, 36, was discovered near Knights Peak, close to Upper Gold Camp Road and Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir, on the evening of Sept. 30, calling for help. “She was alert and breathing,” said Mike Smith, the incident commander for the Teller County Search and Rescue team. Rescue workers, who spent more than 12 hours searching for Jakomait and calling out her name, were elated with the discovery of the missing cyclist.
Although no one knows for sure what happened, authorities believe Jakomait, an accomplished competitive cyclist, incurred a crash during a recreational ride on Sept. 29. The trails that many cyclists use in this area are in much worse shape due to the recent floods. She was reported missing that evening by her husband, after an attempt to find her didn’t pan out.
Approximately 15 to 20 Teller volunteer search and rescue team members, who pursued the cyclist on foot and on bike, located her around 8 p.m. the following day. In addition, nearly 20 search members from El Paso County participated. Luckily for Jakomait, she stayed close to the main Pipeline Trail near Gold Camp Road and didn’t venture off the main route. But she was ill-prepared for spending overnight excursions.
Both she and her husband, Jesse Jakomait, were thankful of the exhaustive search efforts done by volunteers
This marked another big victory for the Teller search and rescue crew, who conduct rigorous training in preparation of incidents like this. During a previous avalanche training mission on Pikes Peak, Teller County Search and Rescue team leaders estimated that they usually handle about 40 missions a year, with individual crew members sometimes investing 600 to 1,000 hours a year.
According to Teller search and rescue crew veterans, it is usually a combination of bad decisions that get most people into trouble, no matter how skilled they are in handling the outdoors.