Saturday, December 24, 2016

A Christmas Miracle

A sheriff's official says it was "a Christmas miracle" that searchers found and rescued members of a Pennsylvania family stranded in two separate locations in a northern Arizona forest after their vehicle got stuck on a snowy road while trying to reach the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, which is closed for winter.

Once a major winter storm began hitting the region Saturday afternoon, it probably would have been impossible to locate Karen Klein, who had gotten stranded with husband Eric Klein of Easton, Pennsylvania, and their 10-year-old son, Isaac, said Jim Driscoll, chief deputy for Coconino County.

"Our guys are ecstatic. This is a save," Driscoll said of the searchers. "We were able to get a family back together for Christmas. It could have gone very bad very, very easily."

The family got stuck on a forest road after they found State Route 67 to the North Rim closed for the winter but sought an alternate way to reach their destination, Driscoll said.

"Google Maps shows there's a way — but it's impassable," he said, adding. "This is a problem we've had numerous times."

Searchers on snowmobiles early Saturday morning tracked and located Karen Klein, 46, after she walked about 26 miles in search of help before taking refuge in a cabin at a seasonally closed park entrance, Driscoll said.

Other searchers rescued Eric and Isaac Klein Friday afternoon after the 47-year-old father was able to hike to higher ground to get cellphone service to call for help, Driscoll said.
That contact started an air and ground search for Karen Klein, with multiple agencies participating, Driscoll said.

"This is a Christmas miracle," Driscoll said. "We were really beginning to think, especially with the snow coming in ... we pulled out all the stops."

Via twitter. For more go here:'s-official:-Rescue-of-family-'a-Christmas-miracle'


chickelit said...

We have to credit Trump, somehow. This happened on his pre-watch.

Felicitous Nativity, Lem.

edutcher said...

Good point about Google Maps (also MapQuest, GPS) and, yes, it can get extremely cold up in that country.

People think Arizona means desert and it doesn't, ay least not the northern half. Those who know Westerns should remember pictures like "Last Train From Gun Hill" and "Yellowstone Kelly" were shot there.

chickelit said...

We have to credit Trump, somehow. This happened on his pre-watch.

It's been his watch from Thanksgiving on; Pissy's just been trying to grab a little attention.

Sixty Grit said...

Last time I was at the North Rim of the canyon it was July and the snow, even then, was 4' deep. I don't recall the altitude precisely, but the number 8,800 feet sticks with me for some reason. Not a place to mess around in in December.

The mountains out west are unrelenting - you really need to have your stuff together to survive getting lost there. I followed a lot of cases in the Cascades where people wandered off the road and died - there is a mindset involved called the ratchet effect - people keep going one direction, refusing to go back to the last place where they weren't lost.

Glad those folks made it.

Lem said...

Thanks chick 🐥 and everybody here Feliz Navidad

ndspinelli said...

Northern Arizona is an entirely different state compared to southern Arizona. Same w/ New Mexico. But, you could make that statement about many states, and not just in relation to climate, topography, etc. Northern Illinois and Indiana are almost entirely different states politically and culturally. Folks in the southern ends of those 2 states speak w/ a southern accent.

virgil xenophon said...


Same for some cities and entire States. Bob Edwards of NPR (who is from Louisville) once said of his home town" Louisville is neither especially Southern, but neither is it especially Midwestern--but especially neither. " The same can be said for the entire State of Missouri (Midwestern or Southern? Or both?) Northern CA VS SOCAL, Eastern Ky/Tenn vs Western--I could go on & on..

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

Arizona is at elevation.

ndspinelli said...

Virgil, Absolutely about Mizzou. StL is more snobby than KC and many St. Louis folks consider themselves Midwest w/ a touch of Eastern. KC has a lot of migrants from the south and is, as you said, a hybrid Midwest/South city. KC has more of a southern twang than StL people.