Hiker Who Was Lost For 24 Hours Ignored Calls From Rescuers Because It Was An Unknown Number

Credit: Alamy

A hiker who was lost in Colorado for 24 hours ignored the calls from rescuers because they came from an unknown number.

Many of us don’t like picking up phone calls if we don’t know who they’re from.

In fact, one TikToker recently went viral for explaining her hack to avoid unwanted calls from unknown numbers.

But one hiker who was lost in Colorado took his phobia of calls from unknown numbers a little too far.

He was lost in the wilderness for 24 hours but refused to answer his phone to the rescuers…

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The hiker, whose name has not been released, was stranded on Colorado’s Mount Elbert.

He was reported missing at 8pm on a cold October night, leaving the rescuers concerned about his fate.

Lake County Search and Rescue (LCSR) officials released a statement of their search efforts for the anonymous hiker.

He had started his climb at 9 am, and so when he hadn’t returned by the evening, the alarm was raised.

And what made things look even more concerning was the fact that the missing man was not answering his phone.

When the hiker was eventually found, he explained to the rescuers that he had accidentally diverged from the main path, and had spent the night trying to get back on track.

Unknown number
One hiker was lost in the wilderness for 24 hours and refused to answer his phone to the rescuers. Credit: Alamy

The hiker finally found his car after they “bounced around onto different trails trying to locate the proper trailhead,” said the statement.

On top of this, “they had no idea that SAR was out looking for them.”

Luckily, by the morning, the rescuers had safely returned the hiker to their lodging.

But there was one element of the Lake County Search and Rescue’s statement that really tickled the internet.

One Facebook commenter jokes: “With the legalization of the Colorado favourite drug. Is this the dumbest thing that has happened? Sounds like he zoned out for a while. Got up the next morning and carried on. ‘JUST CHILL MAN.'”

Another laughs: “Do you bill for rescues? Because in this case, you really should!”

While a third agrees: “They were millennials or Gen-Z, right? They do this very same thing when they order delivery and the driver can’t find their house: the driver calls, and they ignore the calls and texts because they don’t know the number.”

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The statement reads: “One notable takeaway is that the subject ignored repeated phone calls from us because they didn’t recognize the number. If you’re overdue according to your itinerary, and you start getting repeated calls from an unknown number, please answer the phone; it may be a SAR team trying to confirm you’re safe!”

The team also adds in the comments: “Please remember that what seems like common sense in hindsight is not obvious to a subject at the moment when they are lost and panicking. In Colorado, most folks who spend time outdoors have a good understanding of the SAR infrastructure that is there to help them, but this is not the case nationwide. Please keep your comments respectful.”

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Written by Annie Walton Doyle

Annie Walton Doyle is a content editor at IGV who specialises in trending, lifestyle and entertainment news. She graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London, with a degree in English Literature. Annie has previously worked with organisations such as The Huffington Post, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Harvard University, the Pulitzer Prize and 22 Words.