A hiker got lost in the mountains of Colorado for nearly 24 hours and search and rescue teams were unable to contact the lost hiker, despite placing multiple calls. The SAR teams went out at 3:00 a.m. and again at 7:30 a.m. and were unsuccessful in their attempts to find him. Eventually, the hiker made it out of the mountain on his own.
And why didn’t he answer the repeated calls from the Search and Rescue teams? They were from an unknown number, so the hiker declined the calls. Apparently, the hiker was completely unaware that search teams were looking for them.
The Lake County Search and Rescue said on Facebook they got a report of a hiker who hadn’t returned according to their itinerary from a hike on Mount Elbert. They jumped into action, with mixed results. Sure, they didn’t find the hiker, but the guy did make it out on his own. Apparently, the hiker lost the trail around nightfall and spent most of the night looking for it. Once on the trail, the hiker wasn’t sure if it was the right one and jumped around to several others.
Like most classic Seinfeld episodes, all this drama and misunderstanding could have been totally avoided with one cell phone call. It’s easy to mock, but the level of panic you would probably feel if you were lost alone in the mountains is presumably pretty intense. Also, in situations like that, hikers may be trying to conserve battery to use for map/directional purposes, so wouldn’t risk answering calls about their extended warranties or some other spam/scam calls.
So the advice from the rescue team is pretty simple and is pretty similar to advice given to teenagers by their parents. Answer. Your. Damn. Phone. Only, they said it a little more “professional.”
“One notable take-away is that the subject ignored repeated phone calls from us because they didn’t recognize the number,” they wrote. “If you’re overdue according to your itinerary, and you start getting repeated calls from an unknown number, please answer the phone, it may be a SAR team trying to confirm you’re safe!”