Rescue crews stay busy in Red River Gorge

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POWELL COUNTY, Ky. (WDKY) – The Red River Gorge shows the beauty of eastern Kentucky and is a great place for families to enjoy fun on a weekend, but if not prepared, things can go from good to bad really quickly.

“Terrain that you have to crawl through or trip on. It’s rugged out there now with it being wet. You have slippery terrain and it’s dangerous on the corners,” said Lisa Johnson with Powell County Search and Rescue.

Johnson says some of the trails around are not easy, and they’ve had an increase in rescues recently.

“The other night two hikers got turned around on the trail, which happens more than people know, and we had to go on and get them out,” Johnson said.

Normally during the summer this area sees an increase in people, but because of the pandemic they are seeing even more visitors.

“I can honestly say that our campgrounds are full. The pandemic has really made people reach out to be away from their neighborhoods and area to breathe. They can’t go too far, but you got your gorge. This is their backyard and they’re coming to their backyard to play so they can breathe,” Johnson said.

This leads to more inexperienced hikers, and exhaustion can come quicker than you think.

“Talk to someone before you go in. That you can do it, being on a lot of those trails you think it’s okay and it’s eight miles. So just know your park and your trail,” Johnson said.

This is not to discourage anyone from coming to the gorge. Just a reminder to make sure you are prepared for anything.

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