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Deschutes County

Lost motorcycle rider rescued after all-night search west of Bend

DCSO Search and Rescue rig

Became separated from group, made wrong turn, it wouldn't restart

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – A Gilchrist man whose motorcycle wouldn’t start, leaving him stranded in the woods west of Bend, was rescued Sunday morning, cold and tired but OK, after an all-night search effort, Deschutes County sheriff’s deputies said.

County 911 dispatchers got a report just after 11 p.m. from friends of the 29-year-old man who said they had been riding together in the Triangle Hill area, near the junction of Forest Service roads 4601 and 4602, when they got separated, Lt. Bryan Husband said.

Husband said they learned later that after the group separated, the dual-sport rider "made a wrong turn, flooded the fuel system and couldn't get it restarted."

The friends got a call from him around 6:15 p.m. He said he had left his cellphone in the friends’ truck and had been walking and pushing his motorcycle for 1-2 miles when he came across another motorcycle rider who let him borrow his cellphone to call them, Husband said.

The friends told him to continue walking downhill on the road and they would meet him at the truck, but he never arrived. The three other riders went to where he reported having been but could not find the man or his motorcycle. They searched until late Saturday night, when they reported him missing.

Husband said deputies then searched through the night, without success, joined early Sunday by more than 20 Sheriff’s Search and Rescue volunteers, searching by vehicles and ATVs.

About 8:30 a.m., deputies finally were able to speak directly with the man who had loaned his cellphone to the rider to call his friends. They learned the rider had been on Forest Service Road 370, about a mile north of Todd Lake, “a significant distance” from the earlier described area, Husband said.

At that time, they offered to have the rider follow him and his group to the main road, but he said he was fine and kept pushing his motorcycle north on the 370 Road.

With that information, SAR volunteers were given new search assignments, and around 9:15 a.m., dispatchers got a call from a mountain bike rider on the Mrazek Trail who had come across the rider, who had walked away from his motorcycle early Sunday morning and was tired and cold, Husband said.

Nearby SAR teams went to his location, began warming efforts and took him in a SAR vehicle to the Tumalo Falls/4601 parking area. Bend Fire medics were dispatched and evaluated the rider. A deputy helped the man reunite with his family.

Accidents and Crashes / Central Oregon / News / Top Stories

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          1. He should have been carrying the one tool that comes standard with every gasoline powered motorcycle ever made. And he should have known how to use it.

            Then everyone concerned would have eaten their supper on time.

  1. Even if you don’t have a spark plug wrench, if you wait long enough when it’s flooded, it’ll start. Moral of this story is to not separate from the herd. The wolves will get you.

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