Colorado man rescued after 10 hours trapped in 5 feet of snow during storm – WPXI

Colorado Man Rescued After Being Trapped in 5-Foot Snowdrift for 10 Hours Amid Storm

In Gilpin County, Colorado, a man faced a terrifying ordeal when a snowstorm trapped him in five feet of snow. Bren Wilson was clearing snow near his family’s home when his tractor became immobilized. His daughter, Kyla Wilson, shared the harrowing story with 9News in Denver.

Bren Wilson underestimated the snow’s depth as he began plowing. The snow continued to fall heavily, and soon, stepping out of his tractor, he found himself chest-deep in snow. His initial plan was to reach a part of the road he believed was already cleared. Despite dressing warmly, he wasn’t prepared for the prolonged exposure to the cold as he trudged through the snowdrifts.

As night fell and Bren Wilson didn’t return home, his family became anxious. Kyla, who was at school, found out her father was missing and immediately called his cell phone. An exhausted Bren answered, explaining that he had stopped walking and had dug a snow cave to rest and wait for help, as reported by ABC 7.

Kyla Wilson advised her father to avoid building his cave in the middle of the road and urged him to call 9-1-1. However, their call was disconnected before he could hear her advice. The family then contacted emergency services themselves, prompting the Alpine Rescue Team to spring into action. This volunteer group specializes in responding to emergencies in the challenging conditions of Gilpin, Clear Creek, and Jefferson counties.

The rescue team faced their own challenges with the snow conditions. Steve Wilson, a team member unrelated to Bren or Kyla, described the snow as five feet of fresh, unconsolidated powder, which made using snow machines, skis, and snowshoes extremely difficult. The rescuers’ snowmobiles even got stuck, forcing them to proceed on skis.

Their progress was slow, covering only a quarter of a mile in four hours. Meanwhile, Kyla managed to reconnect with her father over the phone, keeping him awake and talking for over 90 minutes to fight off his exhaustion and the cold.

“He just kept saying, ‘I’m so sleepy, so tired,'” Kyla recounted to 9News. She knew the dangers of him falling asleep in such conditions and did everything to keep him alert.

The rescue team eventually found Bren Wilson. They provided immediate care to stabilize him, warming him up and giving him warm liquids and food. After enduring the harsh conditions, Bren needed hydration and calories to help his body generate heat. The rescuers equipped him with warmer jackets and moved him off the snow until more help arrived.

Bren Wilson was taken to a Denver hospital for hypothermia treatment and was released the following day to recover at home. Reflecting on the ordeal, Kyla Wilson expressed her relief and gratitude, acknowledging how quickly life can change. She vowed to cherish every moment with her father, grateful for the miracle of his survival.