Utah County Teen Safe After Being Separated From Biking Group Near Moab
GRAND COUNTY, Utah – A Utah County teen is safe after spending the night alone after being separated from his mountain biking group in Grand County.
According to a news release from the Grand County Sheriff’s Office, 15-year-old Kyler Wood was biking with his Vineyard-based Boy Scouts troop when he lost them. Kyler’s father, Treven Wood, said Kyler fell behind the group and a leader had been keeping an eye on him.
“He was about 100 yards in front of Kyler, went around a bend or a turn, and Kyler never came around that turn,” Treven Wood said.
With no water, Treven said Kyler kept on pedaling, thinking he would catch up to the group, but he apparently missed a turn.
“He just kept going because he thought he just needed to catch up. He just kept going and going and going. He said he pedaled until dark,” Treven said.
As night fell over the Grand County desert, Treven said Kyler looked for somewhere to rest.
“He was like, ‘I think I need to find a place to lay down to try and sleep’, so he said he found soft, squishy ground and laid down. He said it was pretty cold and he didn’t sleep much overall,” Treven said.
While searchers tried to find Kyler, his family headed for Moab.
“I was terrified. It was just…all kinds of thoughts running through my head that he’s out there alone and I wish I could just find him and help him,” Treven said.
After a night with little sleep, Treven said Kyler hit the trail again.
“Daylight came and he just decided to start riding again, but he decided to backtrack. Went back the way he came and just kept going and that’s when the helicopter found him,” Treven said. “I said, ‘Okay, the helicopter found you. What did you do? Did you stop and wave your arms?’. He said, ‘I didn’t know what to do, so I just kept riding!’ and they had to yell at him through the PA to stop!”
The Utah Department of Public Safety helicopter crew brought Kyler back to the staging area to reunite with his family. Treven said Kyler was sunburned, but seemed to be in good shape. The experience, he said, will have a lasting impact.
“It just makes me want to not waste any time with anything, because you never know what’s going to happen tomorrow, or in an hour,” he said. “Make sure everybody knows how you feel. Make sure your loved ones know, because you never know what will happen,”
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