Missing hiker stayed alive by crawling to creek with broken bones to get water

Miyuki Harwood

A hiker amazes searchers when she was found alive after 9 days after she went on a hiking trip with the Sierra Club near Sacramento and became separated from the group on Aug. 20.

Searchers were worried that Miyuki Harwood, 62, from Folsom may not survive as she only had enough water for one day and the Rough Fire burning close by hindering the search for her as the smoke limited their vision. 

Then, early Saturday morning, Harwood was found in a remote part of the Sierra National Forest, east of Courtright Reservoir after rescuers heard a whistle being blown, said Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims.  When they went to investigate they found an injured Harwood.

“She was really at the end of the time period that we thought she could survive,” said Mims.  “She was a fighter…..we have good news at the end of nine days.” 

The water bottle that Harwood had carried with her for that hike that day had a filter on it and it would allow her to drink the water from a nearby creek without getting sick, reports the Sacramento Bee.  But she had to crawl to it as she was badly injured.  It took her two days but Harwood managed to crawl all the way to the creek with several broken bones.   How Harwood was injured is unknown at this time.

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Jerrie Dean, who is retired from Federal Law Enforcement, is the Founder of Missing Persons of America.

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