Stranded By Max simek


One Day when the temperature gave a grim chance of any life surviving, I survived. My name is John and I will tell how I lived and survived in one of the harshest places in North America.

It all started about 6 months ago I was going on a snowmobile trip from Colorado to Canada. I had been planning the trip for months. It was a 1200 mile journey to get to a major town in Canada from Colorado. From the distance I had expected to be there in about a week. Expecting the worst, I brought flares to signal anybody if I had trouble. And I brought extra gas in case I needed to keep going.

The first day I woke up bright and early expecting to see my best friend in a week in Winnipeg, Canada. I was traveling to Cheyenne, WY and the total distance was just under two hundred and fifty miles which would take eight hours. I was fired up to go quickly, so I put on my snow gear with my helmet on last. Last night, there was twelve inches of snow fall. I expected great powdery fresh snow but it happened to still be falling. I got out on the trails trying to make the best of it but visibility was zero, and I could not see in front of my face if I tried. All I had to go off on the trails was the signs the DNR had posted. It was like I was on “The Price is Right,” guessing which door the prize was behind but, if I picked the wrong one I could put my life at risk.

The weather was brutal, so I got to a restaurant fifty miles away from where I started. In only four hours, my hands were half frostbitten and my feet felt like a semi truck had run over them and then came back and run them over with all eighteen of the wheels and then finally had dropped a twenty-ton boulder. I knew daylight would not last for much longer so I sprung up feeling like a deflated whoopee cushion. The sun was falling and the temperature was dropping so fast that when I left it had changed from 5 to -25 degrees. I knew that to bare the cold weather I was going to need to be prepared. So, just in case I had brought a firestarter and matches, because I didn’t what to be known as a six foot tall nature made bomb pop. I knew a was never going to be a six foot tall bomb pop because I’m only five foot nine. Maybe the animals will sacrifice me or just eat me.

I just needed to get my mind off this idea that I might become a six foot tall bomb pop or a sacrifice to the animals. I just needed to get going. So after all that dreaming I had been doing I decide to get a move on it and get back on the trail. But before I could get to my destination I decided to have some fun and play in the powdered snow. My favorite things to do are to gun it and when you're about to get stuck fall right back down and race down the hill but if that isn’t fun you find the deepest snow on the mountain and swerve right and left and see how long you can last. After playing around for twenty five minutes the sun started to set. I wasn’t worried because I knew that with my LED light bar I could lite up the trail. But I could not have forgotten that I could be sleeping out here. I had decided that I will face that situation when I get there.

I didn’t want to push my snowmobile too hard or it could run out of gas soon. I had a reserve tank of gas that I had forgotten to fill up at the last gas station. All I could believe is that the tank was half full. The one gallon could get about thirteen miles but, if I was conservative I could probably stretch it to sixteen miles. My tank on my snowmobile was a quarter full. The tank was a twelve gallon tank. So I have five gallons and if the hyper miling works I can stretch eighty miles to get to my destination now only ninety miles away. Even if the hyper miling works I’ll be walking for all night in this terrain. I knew that if I didn’t make it there that the ten miles left will feel like one thousand. I knew just pushing through the night. I was getting tired, and I knew that if I pushed myself too hard I could die. So I decided to hunker down in the mountains for the night. As I was setting up camp I was hearing weird noises growing like the bubbling of a fryer.

After the noises stopped I headed to bed before they could begin again. Twenty minutes into my deep slumber I heard knocking like the sound of the Mcdonald's jingle. “Ba da bump ba bump, I’m loving it!” I kept thinking to myself that waking up to the groan of a bear wasn’t the best thing I had in mind. I didn’t want to wake to be killed by a bear or me killing one of God’s creatures, but if I had to choose I would have to go with living. As I got up expecting an angry bear, I had my knife ready if I had to. But instead of there being a big angry bear it was a little baby cub. The cub looked like it had not eaten in weeks as it was a skinny as a blade of grass. The cub looked hungry so I gave it some the beef jerky I had in my bag. I knew the cub need to be saved so instead of meeting my friends, I knew the right thing to do was take the bear to a animal rehabilitation center back in Colorado. I knew the journey was going to be a long one. One hundred and fifty miles of some of the most deadly terrain in North America.

On my snowmobile I made a makeshift sled for the cub behind my snowmobile so it would be easier to get it to the rehabilitation center. I stuffed the little cub in there and I was on my way. It seemed the cub was having a really good time on the the sled ride. I expected it to take about four hours to make it there, and we were making good time. I had stopped about halfway with the cub, and we played around in the snow. Unfortunately the snowmobile ran out of gas before we made it the full distance. We made it eight-five miles and we still had sixty-five more miles to go. I pulled my snowmobile off the trail. I knew from hereon that I needed to follow the trail to my destination and hope for the best.

If I could just get forty-five miles to a town so that I can call someone. Luckily I had brought my snowshoes to make the treacherous journey far easier. But there was a problem with the snowshoes the bolts were rusting out. After getting my snowshoes out I made a satchel to hold the cub. An hour into the journey I had only gone a half of a mile. The high altitude was taking all of the energy out of me. The sun was starting to set and I knew I shouldn't play games out in the wild. I decided to set up camp about a tenth of a mile off the trail I managed to get a fire started.

The next day I was beat down but determined to get the cub to safety. I decided to follow the snowmobile train and even though it wasn't as direct as the mountain route, it was a more flat route. In my mind, I heard engine noised and thought snowmobiles would be coming down the trail. But for a solid hour I waited for them to pass, but they never did. Having accomplished nothing, I decided to set up camp about ten miles away from my destination. Setting up camp with the regular fire, I was determined to make it the last ten miles of the journey and hoping not to be killed by the cub's mother.

The next day I was determined but weary of the idea of the last ten miles of the journey happening during one of the worst blizzards of the year. The conditions were not good and the air groomed a dull white. You could not see. So instead of fighting the blizzard I decided to stay where I was. The next day the blizzard was over and a joy I felt to make it the last ten miles of my journey to get to the phone. So I had called the Animal Rehabilitation Center and they kindly said they would give me a ride to town.


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