Search, Rescue team finds lost mountain biker on Little Creek Mountain trail

WASHINGTON COUNTY — A 43-year-old Arizona man was found almost three hours after he called for help when the frame of his bike broke while mountain biking on the Little Creek Mountain trail, about 18 miles east of Hurricane, Tuesday evening.

At 5:10 p.m., a man, who went mountain biking and expected to be back before dark, broke the frame on his bike and called for help as he was unable to ride his bike back out from the trail, Deputy Darrell Cashin, Search and Rescue Commander with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, said.

Cashin and the Washington County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue team responded by using the coordinates that the lost mountain biker had on his cellphone.

“Deputies took awhile to find him,” Cashin said. “The coordinates were not accurate. I’m not sure what kind of cellphone he had, but pre-paid phones can be inaccurate by about 4,000 meters, which is over a mile.”

With the inaccurate coordinates, and the fact that the mountain biker moved about one-half mile after he called for help, it took rescuers until about 8 p.m. to find him, Cashin said.

“He was not prepared to be out after dark, but once his bike frame broke, he was unable to get back in time,” he said “He was lucky he had cellphone service to call. He is from Arizona so he didn’t know the trails and got lost.”

The mountain biker was found without injuries, Cashin said. He was glad for the man’s safety although he was unprepared for being out after dark.

Cashin gave some precautions to anyone who hikes or bikes and may unintentionally find themselves in a situation to need Search and Rescue’s assistance.

  • Keep water and food, like granola bars available
  • Wear warm clothes, especially as it starts to get cold quickly
  • Have a headlamp or flashlight as a light source, these can be cheap purchases at any convenience store
  • Keep cellphone charged for use in case of an emergency and do no use it as a source for light
  • When calling for help, stay in the same spot unless you’re in danger so responders can find you quickly

“Be prepared for the unexpected,” he said. “Things, like a broken bike, do happen.”

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10 Comments

  • My Evil Twin October 29, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Once again SAR to the rescue. My hat is off to you ladies and gentlemen who give your time so selflessly!

    And if people would only follow your advice about being prepared. Some things just can’t be avoided, and so the person going into the back country needs to be able to mitigate unforeseen circumstances.

  • most dependable people October 29, 2014 at 11:41 am

    these Search and rescue people drop everything and anything and come to the aid of people and they are so fantastic. they don’t give up and they are so good to waiting families. i feel blessed to have this group of people in our county/community. hoping you all get lots of christmas cookies this year!

  • You know October 29, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    Lost on little creek ??? What a lazy biker, you can walk out of little creek in a hour. What a waste of search & rescues time. I hope they charge him for their time.

  • City Folk October 29, 2014 at 10:46 pm

    Seriously, SAR to Little Creek over a broken frame. The guy could have simply followed the trail back to the trailhead. Yet another example of why inexperienced people should stick to the black top!

  • Kevin Hinton October 31, 2014 at 11:55 am

    He is an idiot ,if he had cell then he had gps back to a road .A nice long walk in the dark would have taught him a lesson .

  • Jay October 31, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    I have walked my bike out of Little Creek and known others who have also walked out. If you are having enough fun on your bike, eventually something is going to break. That is hardly deserving of a call to Search and Rescue. He could have walked back to the road faster than SAR got to him.

    That being said, good job Search and Rescue.

  • My Evil Twin October 31, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    I wonder if this individual was a local, and if he was possibly disabled in one way or another? Just a couple of questions I have. . .

  • Climbnride58 October 31, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    He was not a local.

  • Dana November 1, 2014 at 6:52 am

    Mommy, daddy….I broke my bike frame and it’s dark and i’m scared. Come get me. Fool. He needs to sit in a corner and contemplate his stupidity.

  • seriously judgemental people November 6, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    lots of people have gotten lost at little creek mountain, its not hard to do. we locals feel like its a piece of cake b/c it is TOO US.. but thats because we know the area.. how dense do you have to be to have a little mercy for someone not from the area. bunch of judgmental fools. just so we are aware, people have lost their lives not far from there due to the cold nights.. its no picnic up there in the cold! these are tourist that fuel our area and help us to have a very decent economy..and deserve brighter more decent comments than this… at least he wasn’t sitting in front of his computer eating pretzles and judging other peoples lives.. he’s out living it… what some oxymoron statements..

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