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Stranded Saskatoon canoeist, dog rescued by Local HERO Foundation

File: RCMP cruiser. The Canadian Press

A helicopter operated by Local HERO Foundation was used to rescue a canoeist with serious injuries, and his dog, after they were stranded in a remote area of northern Saskatchewan that’s not easily accessible by land or water.

On Wednesday, the 26-year-old canoeist from Saskatoon had sent an SOS alert from his GPS device to let first responders know he was injured and with a dog.

RCMP said they received the alert and determined the canoeist was on a remote waterway about 25 kilometres northeast of Black Lake, Sask., which is near the Northwest Territories border.

Read more: 2 bodies found in northern Saskatchewan lake after canoe flips

Officers were able to contact the canoeist with text messages. He updated police on his serious injuries letting them know he was weaker as the temperatures dropped, officials said.

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With the temperatures in the area dipping to -6 C, and with the canoeist having no gear, police said they knew he had to be rescued that night.

The RCMP said they contacted several aviation companies but none of them were able to travel in the dark.

The location of the stranded man was not accessible by land or water without several long portages, police said.

The Local Hero Foundation ended up sending a helicopter out of Fort McMurray to assist with the rescue.

Read more: Family says ‘entire community grieving with us’ as boy pulled from Pike Lake dies

The man was rescueded along with his dog just before midnight.

When the helicopter landed, they were met by EMS.

The canoeist was taken to hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, police say.

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