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Were any hunters(or fishermen) lost or injured in your area this year? Have you ever been involved in a search and rescue/recov

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  • Were any hunters(or fishermen) lost or injured in your area this year? Have you ever been involved in a search and rescue/recov

    Were any hunters(or fishermen) lost or injured in your area this year? Have you ever been involved in a search and rescue/recovery?

  • #2
    No, but a friend of mine was the state search and rescue manager for lost 7 year old that wandered away from his parents one late fall, with expected freezing temperature that night. He found him a few hours later. He quit S&R right after that. The stress was making him old fast.

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    • #3
      Heard a horrible story this morning. It involved three hunters about 15 miles down the road. I did not recognize any of the names. They were all deer hunting with rifles and none of them were wearing the required hunter's orange. I don't know any details but one hunter shot and killed one of the other fellow hunters.

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      • #4
        A deer hunter was lost in California for several weeks. It made the national news. He was in his seventies and got seperated from his hunting partner. He survived off of small game and native vegetation. He lost about twenty pounds while he was lost.

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        • #5
          I had a 10,000 acre wilderness National Forest area in my patrol area and almost every year we had to search for a hiker or a hunter. Luckily in every case the outcome was positive. I hated the ones in the winter when the temp was 0 or below with 6 or more inches of snow on the ground and the wind blowing. The hunters tracks had been blown over and we couldn't track him. In a couple of cases the hunter had a GPS but used it for a compass and in the cold weather the batteries went dead on him and then he couldn't find his way back to the trail head. Out trails weren't heavily used trails and were hard to follow especially when you had that much snow on the ground. I had one case that the hunter wasn't over 1 mile from us but the wind was blowing so hard we couldn't even hear his 30-06 when he fired it. Luckily my partner cut his track and found him. The area is a large flat area on top of a mountain. People don't realize it but in that situation they walk in a large circle. I haven't figured that out yet but it happens in every situation in that area. Of course then I have had the misfortune of investigating probably 8 or more hunting fatalities during my career, and some of them have been deep in the woods. That is not counting the over 25 that weren't fatalities that I had to go into the woods to investigate and help remove.

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          • #6
            im part of the state search and rescue team and so far it has been a slow season which is great. leaving next week for 6 days and nights of alpine SAR training on top of mount Mitchell it should be a balmy -10 degrees or so and several feet of snow fall.

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            • #7
              I've had a few. The most emotional search was for my sister who was lost in a blizzard. She wanted to tag along for the exercise while several of my brothers and I covered about four miles through the rough Missouri river breaks coyote hunting. We started about a half mile apart but the weather turned real bad with snow so thick visibility dropped to 10 feet. At the end of the hunt, there was no sign of her.

              I loaded up with all the ammo I could carry and started to work the most open parts of the frozen river thinking she would stick to the easy walking on the ice. I would sit and fire three quick rounds (our emergency rendezvous signal) and move on after about 20 minutes. After a few hours, I started to worry because the snow was piling pretty deep making walking difficult. Just about the time I started to really worry, she appeared out of the snow five feet away. She heard the shots and came right to them.

              The most difficult was saving my 240 pound buddy who got caught in the current retrieving ducks and froze in -15 degree weather. That is another story. To this day, I can't believe that I was able to get him a couple miles across rough country to the truck and to a hospital before he died. What made it even more difficult was that he refused to go unless I saved his frozen dog too. That golden lab, frozen solid with two inches of ice covering his body must have weighed 120 pounds. The three of us could write a book about that trek to safety and I'm still amazed that we didn't all die on the way.

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              • #8
                Kolbster, I could really have used you on my Montana elk hunt this past Fall. Over a 10 day period on the mountain in weather from -5 to 18 degrees, I was lost and dying multiple times but nobody came to find me so I had to crawl out on my own. I'm obviously not too smart because I kept going back and doing it again and again.

                Thanks to you and Sarge for your dedication in helping others in need. If it weren't for guys like you two, I'm sure we would hear of a lot more tragedy.

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                • #9
                  Always seems to be a guy who shoots himself or falls from his treestand somewhere in Ohio. Sad because both tragedies are avoidable.

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                  • #10
                    Growing up on a lobster boat in the Gulf of Maine there was always someone getting in trouble. Usually a kayaker on vacation that didn't know the ocean could change so fast. Occasionally a clam-digger in a skiff with no electronics getting turned around in the fog. Luckily for them there were always islands within reach that often had a cottage or summer home on it. The ones that were always a little more tough to swallow were when a boat out of your harbor had sunk and the crew wasn't safe yet. It's pretty chilling to hear someone calling for help on the radio and worse yet to hear the coastguard request help searching for an E-PIRB that has gone off. Search and rescue is all pretty relative to the industry I suppose, but it's not the fun part of the job. Ever.

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                    • #11
                      Like Pray-hunt-work, I live on the Gulf of Mexico and fishermen are always falling victim to the weather or mechanical failure. I towed in quite a few during my charter career.

                      On land, back in the sixties I was one of the few people to have a four wheel drive Jeep, and was called on three times to bring the body of a heart attack victim out of the woods. Driving up to where the family and friend were waiting was the hardest part---they always hoped that there was some mistake and that the victim was still alive.

                      I was involved as a civilian volunteer to search for lost hunters. They always made it out on their own, since there aren't many places left down here where you're more than a couple of miles from some sort of logging road or within earshot of some kind of civilization.

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                      • #12
                        I was involved in a search and recover operation of a pleasure boat that was hit and sunk by a commercial tanker. Four people on board, 1 fatality.
                        In another S/R I participated in a search for a young child that wandered away from camp. Several day search did not find the child - body was never found.
                        On a guide hunt for deer and bear we were instructed to fire after dark, 3 shots straight up in the air if we were lost - . On the first day one hunter did not come to the pick up point and after dark we heard 3 shots. The guide and helper took off and found the guy. He was o.k., just needed help with the deer he had shot. Happy ending.

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                        • #13
                          p-h-w's experience reminds of an interesting one. I was enjoying the best salmon fishing of my life right smack in the middle of Lake Michigan early one morning in fog so thick you couldn't see 10 feet. I grazed right alongside a 32 foot cruiser with an elderly couple that had been adrift for three days.

                          Seems they took a new boat for a test drive one evening. The motor died and they drifted out into the lake with no radio, food, water or any emergency equipment. They ate sandwiches and drank water like I had never seen before.

                          Unfortunately I had to suspend fishing and tow them 30 miles to shore because I could get neither the Illinois, Indiana, nor the Michigan Coast Guard to take over the incident. AND I was catching 25 pound+ Chinooks as fast as I could get a hook in the water. Bummer! They were most appreciative though!

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                          • #14
                            I was in the local Montana gun shop back in 1971 when our area volunteer search and rescue was born. I remember the first ad hoc meeting very clearly. A local boy home on leave from Vietnam drowned in the river and the regional search and rescue outfit stopped looking for him, so his dad got together a bunch of fellas from town and started our own organization. Almost all those guys are gone now. Just me and my brother and one of his diving partners are the only "originals" left. Of course I haven't been active there for 25 years but I try to attend a meeting if I happen to be home. I was involved in countless recoveries. One of the more solemn ones was packing out an older gent's body who died chasing elk. Like me, he preferred to hunt alone. It took us a while to find him. He had a bad heart condition and I kinda think he expected to die that day. There was a bit of a flap from the regional idiots about me packing him out on a horse like "a sack of potatoes." I okayed it with the family. He would have been thrilled to ride out if we'd found him alive, so what's the big deal? They agreed. A fitting final journey.

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                            • #15
                              I will have to relate an amusing incident that happened in the wilderness area that I described. There are blueberries there and people come and camp in the campground and go into the area and pick blueberries. An elderly couple ( mid 70's) were camping and picking blueberries. The lady got turned around and got lost. We searched for her and about 4 hours later we found her and her husband was with us when we found her. She didn't thank us for finding her but she did give him a tongue lashing for not finding her sooner. I felt sorry for the old man because she was gave him the devil all the way back to the campground.

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