A Northern California woman who was stranded in a remote area of Lassen County was rescued after six days, during which she survived on yogurt and snow.
52-year-old Sheena Gullett and her friend 48-year-old Justin Lonich were driving a dirt road off Highway 44 on April 14 when their car got stuck in the snow, the Lassen Count Sheriff’s Office said in a news release. Gullet and Lonich were on their way to Little Valley, a small town where they both live that’s 43 miles northwest of Susanville.
The sheriff’s office revealed that after spending the night in their car, the pair found that their battery was dead and attempted to walk back to Highway 44. But when the soles on Gullett’s boots came off, the two were separated and Lonich was unable to find his friend as a storm dumped snow.
Gullet built a fire and spent another night in the backwoods, and continued walking the next day, officials added. After a third night in the snow, he made it to Highway 44, where he got a ride into Susanville and reported his missing friend to police, the news release said.
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On Wednesday, Lonich “rode along with a sheriff’s deputy in the search area to possibly help provide a better location of where he and Sheena became stuck in the snow,” police said.
Several hours later, authorities finally located the vehicle, in which Gullett was hunkered down. According to a news release via the Lassen County sheriff’s office, immediately after Honich made his report, the members of the department, along with the forest service and the California Highway Patrol began a land and air search for the missing woman.
The searches were delayed due to more bad weather. It wasn’t until April 20, a full six days after they first became stuck, that authorities were able to locate Gullett.
More details from KTXL report:
Honich was part of the search party when she was found at 3 p.m. on April 20. The sheriff’s department’s press release said that when deputies came upon the vehicle, Gullett emerged, emotional but physically okay.
Gullett’s told investigators the same story as Honich about how the pair got stuck in the first place. It was then that Gullett relayed her story of surviving on a yoghurt a day and eating snow for water.
Frustratingly, Gullett said that prior to being found, she had seen a forest service helicopter flying overhead. Due to it being in a heavily wooded area, she was not found at that point.
Deputies said Gullett was not injured and was later evaluated by medical personnel.