My husband and I would like to give a big shout out of thanks to the New Mexico State Police for their heroic effort during this recent snowstorm.
We were camping in the mountains of the Santa Fe National Forest when it hit. We woke up Monday morning to 10 inches of snow, and it was still falling fast and furious.
We were in a remote location about a half mile from a main forest road. We couldn’t see the roads. Nobody else would be able to see them to get to us.
We thought we might be able to break a track with the truck first, then go back and get the trailer. When we were a short way down, we decided we’d better see if we could get back up. We couldn’t.
We started shoveling, slowly making progress, when we slid, hit a hidden stump and broke our back axle. We were stranded.
We would run out of propane in about two days. There’s no internet service in the forest and no ability to make phone calls from where we were, but we could send and receive texts, hit or miss.
I texted the Santa Fe Forest Service. Never got a response. I was finally able to get a text through to my daughter in Rio Rancho, asking her to call them.
They told her they didn’t have the equipment to rescue us and to call the State Police. She did, and let us know they were sending officers to find us.
The State Police called for a plow and sent out a phenomenal team of officers in four big trucks and an ATV. Through several delayed texts, we were able to tell the officers to let us know when they were close and we would try to walk down to the main forest road to meet them.
Just before dark, we got the text saying they were at junction 69/103 and were heading up 103 toward us. Fearfully, we headed out in snow that was now thigh-high, praying we could find our way.
Without a point of reference, everything in the forest looks the same. In snow that deep, every step is exhausting.
I am 67 years old, and my husband is 69. After about 15 minutes of trudging, I was already finding it hard to keep my legs going.
We still had about 30 minutes before we would make it to the main road. Thank God we did find it.
We made our way to the junction, where the officers were finally able to find us.
These men were incredibly kind and compassionate. They told us they would never have given up.
They not only rescued us that night, but worked tirelessly rescuing numerous other campers, ranchers and motorists as well. They not only got us off the mountain, but also took us the entire 70-plus miles to our doorstep on treacherous roads.
We owe them a debt of gratitude that we can never repay.