Hikers Jackson Chandler, senior, Bradley Nelson, junior, were found safely at 2 p.m. on Monday after the two had been missing near Molalla since Saturday, Oct. 27th. The school made the announcement over the intercom at 2:15 p.m. to inform students and staff that the hikers had been found safely.
Chandler and Nelson were found together by an anonymous driver on a service road, six miles from Lost Creek Meadow, where their gold 1999 Mazda truck was found. They were then driven up the road to the rest of the search team, where they were reunited with their families. A medical team on the spot reported that the two were in perfect health.
“The thing that we had to keep telling ourselves [was], ‘just keep putting one foot in front of the other, Taco Bell isn’t going to come to us,’” Chandler said.
The search for Chandler and Nelson began on Sunday after their families became concerned that they did not return home Saturday night from their day-hike at Table Rock near Molalla. Close to 50 people showed up to form the search party, which utilized several trucks and two National Guard helicopters to help canvas the area.
Nelson and Chandler are both Boy Scouts who are two months away from becoming Eagle Scouts, and are experienced hikers. The two had both been on overnight hikes before, but were new to the area. They had no food with them, but were able to use an electric stove to stay warm during the night.
The two finally reached a service road, where they caught the attention of a driver.
“It was a relief because he offered to give us a ride and I felt like we were going to be okay after that,” Nelson said.