Stupid hiker law: Should the city charge for mountain rescues?

Phoenix Fire Department officials say they have responded to 223 mountain rescues in 2015.

- Phoenix Fire Department officials say they have responded to 223 mountain rescues in 2015. When you compare that to last year when they responded to 219 mountain rescues the entire year.

"Folks go up, and they're not comfortable coming down, they need help," said a spokesperson for Phoenix Fire.

An increase in rescues have some calling for a stupid-hiker law. You do something irresponsible on the mountain and need to be rescued, you could be fined. 

For those who hike Camelback and other trails regularly, they say it's a bad idea.

"You can legislate anything you want, but who is going to enforce it, and then it becomes subjective, who do you cite, and who do you don't, it's better to have more rangers," said Jerry Vangasse.

Vangasse and avid hiker Timothy Sierakowskin have argued for years that rangers on the trails is the best way to keep inexperienced hikers safe.

Some young women from Michigan took an Uber to Echo Canyon this morning, but they got a late start. They ran out of water, and frown on the idea of a stupid hiker law.

"I think people should be educated before going on the mountain," said Janine Rosnoliec.

"I think if we had more rangers at these particular sights, then we would really start educating people to such a degree that they would become more prepared," said Timothy Sierakowski.

Vangasse even buys cases of water and places them at the Echo Canyon trailhead. A lot of hikers take advantage of it once they come down.

"I just case it's a cost-benefit ratio, $20 for 10 cases of water vs. a dead hiker. There's no comparison.


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