KETCHIKAN -- Three out-of-state hikers who got in trouble after walking off a Ketchikan trail were rescued with the help of an emergency locator beacon they had borrowed from the Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad.
The Ketchikan Daily News reports it's the first time a rescue has been performed using the beacons that are funded with cruise ship head tax money.
The beacon loan program has been in place since 2010.
Alaska State Troopers received an emergency beacon alert at 1:44 p.m. Wednesday. Two men and a woman were hiking the Silvis Lake Trail but wandered off and became trapped in a depression.
A helicopter spotted the stranded hikers using GPS coordinates about 45 minutes after they activated the beacon.