Sep 13, 2009 9:28 PM by John Romero

Stranded Palmer Lake hikers found safe

It started off as any other day in the woods for Mark Strauch, his son Ethan and brother in law Scott Haring. "We took off Saturday morning for a 20 mile hike loop so my son could fulfill his merit badge." says Mark. That hike turned into something a bit bigger. "It was a little more adventurous than I thought it would be." says Ethan.

The three had been hiking for a few hours when they went off of the normal trail. As the merit badge hike went on, things began to look a little unfamiliar. "After about an hour and a half we realized it was getting darker and colder." explains Ethan. "It started getting too late so at that point we decided we needed to make shelter and hunker down for the night." adds Mark.

Luckily they met up with another stranded hiker from Castle Rock named Andy who is a former Eagle Scout himself. Plus, Uncle Scott always carries a little extra equipment and a lot of know-how. "We built a lean to and had emergency blankets to cover ourselves." explains Scott, "We got underneath that an just hung out for the night."

Ethan only had one thing on his mind as the night settled in. "We were going to go dirt biking this morning, and I realized we couldn't so I was kind of disappointed." he says as everyone around erupts in laughter. With the help of search and rescue everyone is ok. As for the question of whether or not Ethan gets that merit badge, Mark only has one thing to say. "I would certainly hope so!" he says with a laugh, "He should get extra points!"

The hikers were actually able to keep in touch with search and rescue through the use of text messages. Search and rescue says that made them a whole lot easier to find.



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