A man who went missing last week in Yosemite National Park has been identified and his family has been notified. The man was last seen on Monday, October 24th, walking with a female friend near the Upper Camp site in Yosemite National Park. He is a National Park Ranger and was on assignment at the time. It is believed that he may have made his way into the park via Lower Yosemite Falls. Here are some of the survival tips he posted on his personal Facebook page:
“Climbing into my tent at night, really was the only way. Luckily I still had a set of clothes with me. If I hadn’t gone to the river that morning, it’s very likely that I would’ve gotten lost. Thank goodness that I did not leave any of my camping gear here. In fact, I left just my sleeping bag, but I also brought a number of other things that I was sure I would need.
“I’m just sorry that I didn’t bring along my flashlight or another battery operated flashlight. That could’ve helped out a lot. I really don’t know where I put it but I think I put it in my pocket. That flashlight should be right there if I ever get lost again.” -Man who went missing 6 nights in Yosemite
“I actually slept through the first two nights before I woke up the next day. At that point, I went back to the campsite to eat some food. When I came back, the ranger told me that they were searching for a male who had gone missing six nights ago in the Noses. The next time I saw him, he was alone and scared. He mentioned that he was going up the Naves ridge. That’s when I called the rangers and informed them of my experience and the Man who went missing last week.
“Heather, I don’t know what I did to make him scared but I think I locked myself in the toilet. It was really freaky because I have never seen anything like that in my life. Then, about an hour later, the cop told me that he was heading north up into the Naves. The National Park System has a complete inventory of all the hiking and backpacking trails in Yosemite National Park. They also have an extensive search and rescue list. The helms are manned by trained professionals.
The next day, after going through the extensive search operation, I went to the ranger headquarters to ask about my experience in searching for the man who went missing for six nights after backpacking alone in a national park. What I was expecting to hear was just a long list of things like being lost, having a heart attack, getting lost, having diarrhea, not breathing, getting a spider in your throat, etc. But, instead, they gave me this one: “Search and Rescue is requiring that you continue to use their extensive search and rescue arsenal until we can get to you.” It didn’t take them long to figure out that I wasn’t just a person with good survival skills; I was a certified wilderness guide. They appreciated my experience and thought it was smart of me to share it with others.
The official word from the office of the President is that authorities were called to a residence in the Naves area of Yosemite on Monday because a man who had been staying in an unauthorized campsite was threatening to sleep in the tree in the wildcat campground. The man had been away from his family for quite some time. He had stocked a tent at the campsite with food, water, and other survival items; but when the authorities arrived, he was removed from the site and taken for medical treatment. When I arrived at the scene, the fire department had already put out a yellow fire hydrant and emergency vehicles were lined up around the residence. I found the man in a pool of blood near the fire engine, near what appeared to be his final resting place.
I had tears in my eyes as I drove past the scene that day, along with the hundreds of people who had gathered to support this missing man. I’ve lived in Saco for most of my life, and on Monday, I parked my car right in front of my condo so that I could have easy access to the event. When I got to the site of the memorial, I was so thankful that I wasn’t the one who had lost him, because I would have had to navigate a gazebo to get to where he was. A local real estate agent was able to take pictures of the memorial, which is something I’d never seen before about Yosemite National Park; I was also able to find a very sincere obituary written by a ranger, which I truly appreciated.