Chief Scout techniques rescue teenager from mountain ordeal

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An young American survived nine hours lost on the side of a freezing mountain after using skills he learned from Chief Scout Bear Grylls’ TV series.

Jake Denham, 14, became separated from the rest of his family after losing a ski on a skiing trip in Oregon. As night drew in and temperatures dropped as low as -5C, Jake, an avid Bear Grylls fan, racked his brains for techniques that he’d seen on the Chief Scout's TV programmes Survivor Man and Man Vs Wild.

He began by building a snow cave to keep himself warm, digging it into an uphill slope to avoid wind-chill. Later he took the decision to try and follow ski trails down the mountain.

Dense forests hampered rescue efforts, but when he was found, around nine hours after initially being reported missing, he was relatively unscathed by his ordeal, suffering only from mild hypothermia.

Survival skills

Bear’s Man Vs Wild series is tremendously popular in the US, and demonstrates survival techniques for a wide variety of challenging environments.

Bear first got involved in Scouting aged eight as a Cub Scout, and he cites these early adventures as part of what set him on the path to his adult success.

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