BUTTE – Search-and-rescue teams rescued a family of 10 from Lefors, Texas, after they got lost during a hike in the rugged mountains of southwestern Montana.
Beaverhead County Sheriff Franklin Kluesner said two boys, ages 13 and 14, hiked several miles for help June 19, two days after the family got lost in the mountains near Wisdom. The family was out of food and water by the 18th and resorted to drinking stream water.
The boys and a 41-year-old man caught frogs, cooked and ate them on morning of the 19th, and then headed for help. The man collapsed along the way, but the boys continued on.
I’m still trying to wrap my head around a family of ten….let alone the hiking part. Ten people isnt a hike…it’s a patrol. Who wrangles eight kids along a trail?? At least the Irish twins were old enough to go out and bushwhack their way to help.
Anyway…I’ve been down that way and, like much of backcountry Montana, its awfully pretty but, as Blaine famously said, “You lose it here, you’re in a world of hurt.”
Note the detail about everyone being sick from the water. You’ve got no idea whats upstream….dead animals, various fecal adventures, a Bronx zoo of bacteria and pathogens, etc, etc. Twenty bucks gets you a LifeStraw that will let you drink from a Calcutta sewer. I keep one in all my outdoor packs. Bad enough getting lost in the woods, who needs to compound that problem with a bad case of the runs?
Also, note that not only were the trusting GPS, they were trusting phone GPS, which is even more sketchy. Map and compass, man. Even if they’d just found a couple baselines (like a river or road) to establish they probably coulda saved themselves some grief.
As we taught the kids in hunter safety, you gotta have some respect for mom nature ’cause she sure doesn’t respect you.