Cell phone light guides rescuers to missing Liberty Lake hiker - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Cell phone light guides rescuers to missing Liberty Lake hiker

Posted: Updated: April 19, 2010 09:43 AM PDT

LIBERTY LAKE, Wash.- A 20 year-old woman is safe this morning after she became lost for hours during a day hike in Liberty Lake Regional Park. Aleisha Pugh went on the hike Sunday afternoon and couldn't find her way out. She finally called her brother Sunday night after it started getting dark. Her family then called authorities at around 8:30 Sunday night.  

KHQ was able to speak exclusively with Aleisha Pugh following her rescue. She told us that she simply lost her way, started getting deeper and deeper into the park, and when it started getting dark she started getting scared. She had some minor cuts and scrapes, but other than was not seriously injured.  

Officers with the Liberty Lake Police Department were having trouble locating Aleisha because she was off the trail in a tree. She says she climbed the tree because she saw a man in the park who frightened her so she started running and climbed a tree to stay safe. They were able to speak with Aleisha on her cell phone. She told them she could hear the rescuers, but was not able to guide them to her with her voice. They directed her to hold up her cell phone and use the light of the cell phone to guide rescuers to her—and it worked!  

Aleisha was finally brought out of the woods just before 2:00 Monday morning, more than six hours after she initially started her hike. A Sergeant with the Spokane County Sheriff's Office say she was ill prepared for the hike and was wearing only a t-shirt and shorts. That Sergeant recommend hikers should be prepared to get lost on a hike, even though the hope is that never happens. He says hikers should bring warm clothes, something to start a fire, food, and water.

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