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Well last weekend I got out to try my hand at some dry washing with my new machine and then I figured I would pack up around noon and head over to a little wash that is always good for a dink or two! So the morning when very well as I learned the ropes to dry washing and my yield was around 2 DWT for 4 hour of dry washing. I was happy and excited that I had learned something new and did so well my first time out. I decided to hang out for an extra hour and finish tank of gas up before I called it a day and proceeded with my plan to get some nugget shooting under my belt.

As expected I ran out of gas packed the truck and beaming with excitement I hopped in the truck to go metal detecting (with my new 5000 I put the key in and nothing the truck would not start. I had a dead battery. Thinking to myself well its only 1pm I have plenty of time to hike to the high mountain top and call for help, I have some snacks and lots of water this is not too bad. So I packed up my backpack and began my hike. two hours later I still had no cell service and was now frantically trying to send out text messages. Finally I got one to go threw just one out of 100 tries and by now my cell battery was almost dead.

Current time after text was sent 3:30pm

Know i had walked for close to two hours to get to where I was standing and realizing the sun was setting earlier these days I began to get a lump in my throat. I decided to Bline it back to the broken down truck and plan to make camp. On my way back I made better time as all hiking was now down hill. I got back and started making camp. I made 2 fire pits about 7 feet apart I built the back walls much higher so the heat would reflect towards me. I then made a small ring of rocks in front to keep the hot ash and coals at bay if I should fall asleep between the two rings. I believe they call this technique a smoke blanket.

Current time after fire rings were built 5:30pm

Now i realized with the sun setting I had no fire wood so like a bull in a china shop i started chopping and gathering as much wood as possible, and i might add I got a lot in such a short time frame before i lost all sun light. It was now recon time. I was not too bad off as I had thermals, short sleeved T shirt, long sleeved T shirt and a very light jacket. I also had a fire starter, emergency blanket, TP of course, 2 flashlight, a hand held radio, my gun 357 mag, Water, my 3 year old sons snacks in the car seat, 2 towels, and my GPS. I would say I was OK to spend the night even though I did not want to.

Current time 7:30pm

I was still feeling hopeful I would be rescued and my 2 fire pits were working nicely keeping me very warm in fact I only needed my under shirt and my long sleeve shirt on. Side note it was already 36 degrees at 7:30pm WTF its Arizona. In any case it was time for dinner a short walk to collect a few more twigs to burn and then sit by the fire until morning. Spirits were still high.

Current time 10pm

Now reality set in that I would be spending the night. Fire wood was running a bit low all clothing was now on and I was figuring at the rate i was buring the wood in the 2 fire pits I would run out about 1 or 2 in the morning. My plan at this point was to keep warm for as long as possible by the fire and then the coals and once all the warmth was gone I would get into the truck with the emergency blanket, all my clothing I had and the 2 towel and just try to keep warm.

Current time 11pm

my radio made a crackling noise which kind of scared the shit out of me hell I grabbed my gun ready for a shoot out. Once my adrenalin calmed down I realized the radio was making the noise again. I hit the scan button and then the call button waited, waited and did it again. Nothing. Man I got excited for a moment.

Current time 12am

Radio made the noise again, thinking to myself this is too strange I pulled out my surefire Guardian 900 lumen LED flashlight and started to scan the mountain tops thinking if anyone is out there hopefully me lighting up the tallest part of the mountain tops I could would be more visible and a greater chance of someone seeing that. Sure enough i hear my Dads voice come over the radio. Man what a relieve I then went to talk and noticed my radio battery’s were so dead I could not call out. I took apart my other flash light and put 2 new battery’s in although 3 was needed I used one old one and bingo I could now talk to my DAD. I directed him to what wash I was trapped in and down the road comes my Dad and brother in law. They had a new battery, tools, and food. We changed the battery out in 15 min, killed the fires and were on the road home.

Current time 2am

walk threw the door to a pissed of wife with my 2 week old SPOT tracking device in her hand asking why the hell i had not subscribed to the service yet. Man can a guy get a break when he is married or what.

Made it home safe, sound with a slightly damaged ego but hey I had lots of gold in my pocket and the wife came around WIN WIN. Hope you all enjoyed my adventure.

Remember even on short trips always pack and be prepared you never know what might happen out there in the gold fields.

thanks for reading


P.S I did not go back and spell check or re read so sorry if it sounds like a 2nd grader wrote it you all get the idea I’m sure. LOL

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I call them memories to last a lifetime! :)

You will never forget that trip....been there....done that...

I had to hike out 8 miles one time when the starter bendix drive shattered on my old Jeep pick up.

Dad stayed the night. Had a friend come pick me up and I came back the next day with the part and fixed the truck...from then on a spare was in the glove box and my old MAICO 250 was in the pick up bed when I went out.

Now days I really dont feel like walking out anymore so I take a lot of spare parts...even a spare battery.

Looking for a little 125 Enduro I can strap to the back of the Toyota also.

Well, glad you got out and got some gold :)

Great story.

Tom H.

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Nice reminder,

I have been met @ the door by my better half with spot in hand only once (I learned my lesson). Overnight temps in NorNV winters are sub freezing. (25° this morning)

Thats why I carry an overnight kit. 2 gal of water a sleeping bag with bivy sack and air mattress (therm a rest) and a few MRE's.

Oh and a jump starter/inflater battery for cars and charging electronics.

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It was 30 this morning as I walked into the garage and found

one of the doors on my toyota had been left open all night.

My heart sank as I tried the key and the dash lights didn't come on.

Luckily, I still had my jump starter/inflater battery in the back.

I plugged it in, hooked it up to the battery and had things up and running in two minutes.

I didn't even tell my daughter about it when she ran out and jumped in the car for the ride to school.

That back-up stuff can come in handy anywhere at any time.

Glad you made it back Hot Rock

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Glad you're alright Hotrock- thanks for sharing a story that may help someone else avoid a bad scene.

I was draggin my feet about buying quad til 2 winters ago when starter went in most remote spot I go by border.

Got woke up repeatedly during nite by Border Patrol squads then hiked to ranch next day; he drove 5 miles to cell phone coverage and called in mechanic.

SO- I broke down and got beat up old ATV on craigslist. Nice to have :)

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Glad it all worked out. Sounds like youhandled everything just right. I also always have survival stuff in my truck and enough in my pack to survive a night out. Really all you need is some water, a lighter, and a flashlight. Well TP is nice too.

I was elk hunting in November and had a similar story except no truck. I was about 5 miles from my truck when right before dark I shot an elk. I decided not to leave it for the coyotes and risk getting lost in the dark on the hike back so I built a fire and skinned and quaretered it. I had a space blanket and water and a granola bar or two. I actually had a pretty nice night even though it got down below 20 deg. I just got up every hour and stoked the fire and turned over. I figured it was all part of the experience. I didn't expect anybody to be looking for me since I was hunting and camping alone and I knew I'd be able to hike out in the morning. Unfortunately around 4 am a helicopter started flying around with a spot light. I figured somebody must be lost. The helicopter landed in a meadow nearby and pretty soon I hear this guy calling my name. I figured somebody in my family died or something and he was sent out to find me. (This actually happend to a friend of mine on a Grand Canyon river trip once.) The guy comes up and asks if I'm OK and I said, "Sure, what's wrong?" He says, "Aren't you lost?" I said, "No, I just didn't want to walk back in the dark and leave my elk for the coyotes." He tells me that my Dad and his buddies had been out all night looking for me! I was hunting and camping alone and they were in another part of the area but decided to come see how I was doing and had seen my truck and waited for me. When I didn't come back my Dad got to worrying and called out the forces. I think I was the only one who got any sleep that night. Everybody got over it but it took a while.

A few years after that a friend and I were left stranded in a huge snowstorm by another "friend" who was supposed to come pick us up at the end of a 20+ mile hike out of Havasupai from the river. We each had a sleeping bag but by the time we got to the trail head there was 6" of snow and we were out of food and water since we "knew" there would be a car waiting for us. We broke into an old abandoned trailer and slept in there then started a fire the next day to melt some of the 18" of snow that fell over night for water. The story gets worse after that but let me just say that we were not treated very well by the indians who lived nearby. We couldn't even get them to sell us food or let us use a phone or radio. When an indian snowplow driver came in he also wouldn't help in anyway. Not even make a call on his radio. We eventually made it out in spite of them but by the time we made it to the highway my buddy's wife had called the sherrif and he picked us up. They had called my wife wondering if she was worried and she just said, "They are big boys they will be fine." They couldn't believe she wasn't worried and started questioning her as if there had been some foul play. After years of me being a hunting guide out by myself all the time she is trained not to worry. I have to admit that after having kids I bought a Spot tracker.

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Hey Hot Rock,

Great story, one that everyone should hear. I'm sure you remember the time it happened to us. Thank God I still had that 12v battery jump box under the seat. Without that, we would have been walking 10-15 miles for the nearest help.

I used to think, hell it cant be that bad if you got stuck in the hills, but it happened several times to me over the last 10 years I realized it's time to stop acting like it will never happen to me, being a super hero, and get smart about things!!

Thanks for sharing.

Rob Allison

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Thanks Guys

Rob you are correct I am buying on of those 12v jumper boxes for sure.

As for the Spot tracker I have one but I just have not activated it yet man my wife was pissed about that.

I guess the moral of the story is be prepaired even if you are planing a short trip. For me it could have been a lot worse. Live and learn I guess.

Thanks to all


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