BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. – A Texas man’s attempt at getting engaged on top of a mountain in Colorado ended with the couple having to be rescued, according to KDVR.
Joshua Mason, 27, and his girlfriend, Katie Davis, 28, flew from Denton, Texas to Denver on Friday, authorities said. On Saturday, Mason took Davis on a hike from the 4th of July Trailhead to Jasper Peak on the Continental Divide, northwest of Nederland.
Mason was hoping to find an “isolated scenic location” along the 8.2 mile hike that has an elevation gain of over 3,000 feet to the nearly 13,000 foot summit, and he did.
“It’s tough terrain. Definitely back country conditions,” hiker Dawn Sandberg said.
Mason proposed to Davis and she happily accepted the surprise proposal, but then things took a turn. There is no identifiable trail to Jasper Peak, and the couple got lost when it started to get dark.
“As it started getting dark there’s no trail to see. It’s not clearly marked,” Boulder County Sheriff Mountain Deputy Dan Walter said.
Rescuers said the couple had little water and were not wearing warm clothes.
The two became disoriented and lost. It was close to midnight when a camper hiking in the area heard their screams. He led them to a group of his friends who were camping at Diamond Lake, the sheriff’s office said.
The couple were showing signs of altitude sickness as well as severe dehydration when they were found. The campers provided them water, food and shelter in a tent where they were able to get warm.
“They had come down a ridge line and cliffed-out. They came to a cliff and couldn’t go any further and were yelling for help. By the grace of God he (the camper) happened to be hiking by where he could hear them,” Deputy Walter said.
Because of the couple’s condition, one of the campers hiked down to her vehicle in the middle of the night to drive to Nederland to call 911 for the couple.
Rescue crews reached the couple at about 4:30 a.m. and helped them walk down to the trailhead, assisted by Rocky Mountain Rescue Group, along with Nederland Fire Protection and Boulder County Sheriff Deputies.
“He determined that Mason and Davis needed to move to a lower altitude immediately,” the sheriff’s office said.”By that point they had recovered enough that they were both able to walk down to the trailhead, assisted by Rocky Mountain Rescue Group personnel.”
“Mason acknowledged that he did not allow enough time to complete the hike before dark, and they did not carry enough water or food,” the sheriff’s office said.
The good news? The engagement is still on despite the ordeal.