With summer weather arriving, the demands on search and rescue crews in the region increases. Forestlands, trails, and waterways lead to Hood River County being in the top six in the state every year for search and rescue calls, but the other five counties are much larger. Hood River County Sheriff Matt English says many of the calls they receive could have been avoided. He says at this time of year, many hikers from out of the area don’t realize as they hike on trails the further south they go, the more likely they are to run in the snow, and then decide to push through and lose the trail, and become lost. English emphasizes hikers should let people know their itineraries, understand cell phones have limitations and may not work in some locations so take along a hand-held GPS unit, and be aware of weather and fire conditions. Also, even if going on a day hike, be prepared for a longer stay in the wilderness.