Stranded Hikers Rescued After Using Message in a Bottle to Call For Help

September 12, 2019

nito100 iStock / Getty Images Plus


A California family who were stranded above a 40-foot waterfall, used a message in a bottle to call for help, CNN reports. Curtis Whitson, his 13-year-old son and girlfriend Krystal Ramirez had been hiking for three days when they found themselves trapped in a narrow ravine: the river current was too strong fo them to cross, and a rope they expected to use to rappel down was gone. The hikers heard voices, so they knew people were nearby, but weren't getting any responses to their calls for help. So they inserted a note that read "We are stuck at the waterfall -- get help please," into a plastic bottle and tossed it into the water. Hours later, they heard a voice over a loudspeaker coming from a helicopter above: "This is Search and Rescue. You have been found." "It was one of the best feelings," Whitson said. "Nothing was sweeter than those words uttered by CHP." The family was told to stay warm, and the next morning rescuers were able to extract them from the falls. Officers said two hikers found the message and contacted authorities. Whitson still does not know who found the bottle, but hopes to meet them so he can thank them personally.