They don't call it the Wild West for nothing.
They don't call it the Wild West for nothing. (Wikimedia/Google CC)

Hiker Survives on Moths, Melted Ice

Spends 144 hours alone in the Sierra Nevada

They don't call it the Wild West for nothing.
Lauren Steele

Gregg Hein, 33, was on a solo hike in the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks when a loose boulder caused him to lose his footing and fall 150 feet. The 33-year-old broke his right leg in three places, with bones protruding from the skin and his foot “dangling,” according to USA Today.

Hein quickly evaluated his situation and knew that a tourniquet would ultimately result in amputation, so he stabilized his leg with a cord, his belt, and hiking poles and found refuge after scooting himself near a glacier, where he was able to melt enough ice to drink and find enough bugs to eat. On day four, Hein crawled nearly a mile so he would be more visible to possible rescue parties.

When helicopter crews spotted him on July 10, Hein was immediately transported to a hospital, where he underwent two surgeries to pin his leg bones back into place. It is expected that he will need two more surgeries and that a full recovery will take months.

“As soon as I can get back to trail running and hiking, I’ll be out there,” he toldĀ USA Today. As Hein has already proved, for an adventurous spirit, where there’s a will, there’s a way.

From Outside Magazine, April/May 2021
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Lead Photo: Wikimedia/Google CC
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