Central Okanagan Search and Rescue takes pride in their skillset, but when it comes to searching, they have some competition from 74-year-old Raymond Imbeau and his partner Barbara Kitz.
The two ATVers spend about 100 days a year searching the southern B.C. backcountry for discarded bottles and cans.
Not only do they help clean up the forests, they donate their proceedings to worthy non-profit organizations. This year, COSAR is the lucky recipients of a cheque for $700.
Raymond and Barbara have been donating their “earnings” for years. Recent recipients include Kelowna General Hospital’s cardiac unit and the Salvation Army’s Disaster fund.
This year they collected 8,000 refundable liquor bottles, juice boxes, water bottles, pop cans including a one-day haul of 1250 cans from a spot in the south Okanagan.
The duo has explored all of southern BC from the Chilcotins in the west to the Columbia Icefields in the east and south to the U.S. boarder.
This year they covered close to 2,500 kilometres on their CanAm 650 two-up.
And, to ensure they never have to call search and rescue, their quad is fully equipped for survival. They have navigation devices, a SPOT personal locator beacon, radios, rope, food, water and survival gear. They are prepared and also make sure that they file a trip plan before venturing into the backwoods.
For more information on backwoods safety or to donate, visit www.COSAR.ca