BLACK HILLS, S.D. (KELO) — A statewide endangered and missing persons advisory, that’s what happened this week after two men took a snowmobiling trip in the Black Hills. The two men were found alive and were evacuated out of the hills, but the rescue raises important points.

Icy roads, rough terrain, and a winter storm in the forecast – those were just a few of the challenges facing search crews this week in the Black Hills.

“Every time we go out and we do a search, the responders are putting their lives at risk to save a live. So it is always very important, if you can stay on trail, have the equipment to self-rescue if need be, please by all means do that,” Lt. David Switzer of the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office, said.

More than 200 people joined the search for two men in their 70s. The two men were OK, but searches don’t always have positive outcomes.

That’s why snowmobilers like Duane Stanley say you have to be prepared for anything.

“The Black Hills is kind of unique in that we are very much known for some of the best snow trails in the country but we also have opportunities for back hill riding. It can get rugged out there in places and you can get yourself in trouble,” said Stanley, a member of the Mile-High Snow Drifters Snowmobilers Club.

Stanley says that the three most important items you can take with you snowmobiling is a helmet, warm clothing, and some form of communication.

It’s also important to stay updated on the weather before you go out and during your trip.

“You can be out riding in a 25, 30 degree day, very beautiful sunny day and once it gets dark, the temperature drops pretty quick. It’s not uncommon for it to be 30 degrees in the daytime and below zero at night. Storms can come in pretty quick. It can be a nice sunny day and then turn to white out conditions,” Stanley said.

By having all the right equipment with you, staying on the trails, telling someone where you are and when you will be back, you have a much better chance of avoiding a worst-case scenario.

The searchers this week included representatives from agencies across the Black Hills including local snowmobiling clubs.