ELY, Minn. -- Rescue squads were searching for a group of injured Girl Scouts in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness on Friday night, July 26, after a lightning strike that occurred as thunderstorms rolled through the region.
The St. Louis County Rescue Squad’s Rick Slaten said that they were working with Lake County authorities to reach Knife Lake. The sprawling lake, located some 30 miles northeast of Ely, shares the border between the United States and Canada.
Slaten said a party of six campers reported that a lightning strike had affected them all.
“Two were showing symptoms that have us concerned,” Slaten said at about 10 p.m.
“We’re going in by ground and paddle,” he said, because a National Guard helicopter was not available to aid the search Friday night.
The Minnesota State Patrol deployed a fixed-wing aircraft to pinpoint the party’s position, and a State Patrol helicopter was also expected to be deployed at first light Saturday morning.
The National Weather Service reported that severe weather swept across northeastern Minnesota early Friday evening, spawning lightning, hail and strong winds.