January 16, 2007

A Happy Ending

"Dorn, who left for a two-week camping trip Dec. 6, had a tent, a sleeping bag and enough food and water for two weeks. After that, she drank from the river, kept warm by building fires and 'used very little energy,' Benoist said."

That's how you arrive at a happy ending - you keep your head & do what you need to do to survive. It doesn't always work but there are times when it's critical. As someone once told me a persons desire will limit them much more than their capabilities. If you think all is lost then you're probably right.

"A faint sound made Albert and Peter Kottke stop and look around as they hiked out of the Gila Wilderness at the end of backpacking trip. A figure moved on the other side of the Gila River. As it drew closer, the two university students saw a woman, hunched over and moving slowly.

The Kottkes crossed the river to find Carolyn Dorn, 52, who had been alone in the Gila National Forest for five weeks after becoming trapped on the wrong side of the rain- and snow-swollen river. The search for her had been called off two weeks ago."

5 weeks away from civilization. Not a big deal if you plan on it (in fact it sounds tempting) but a very big deal if you stay 2.5 times longer than you thought you would. After she was found the hikers gave her food, water & a book to last a few days as they hiked 20 miles to get some help.

"Dorn told the brothers she was warm enough at night, but her eyes lit up when they offered her the book, he said. He felt comfortable leaving her after that because 'you could tell she had a positive outlook,' he said." (emphasis mine)

Attitude. That's one of the most important things if not the most important thing in such a situation. Miss Dorn wanted to make it through her ordeal. So she did.

"Rescuers told them she was severely hypothermic when found because that night was cold and windy, but that she was perking up and eating breakfast and seemed to be doing well." (link added)

Don't get me wrong - I'm sure it was not a pleasant experience for Miss Dorn. Being hungry & chilled (temps dropped into the low teens over the last few weeks in that area) & generally lost can take its toll on you. But she seemed determined to make it past her predicament & had a basic plan to do so. Hopefully she'll have a speedy recovery.

Posted by Publicola at January 16, 2007 07:48 AM | TrackBack
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