Can you put a price on survival?
We're betting that White County emergency services in Tennessee were not too pleased to factor this rescue mission into their 2011 budget.
Last weekend two twentysomething men decided to test their survival skills during an overnight expedition in the Virgin Falls State Natural Area.
Greg England of the local Expositor newspaper, said the pair had “received cold-weather survival training in Canada” and wanted to test out the skills in sub-zero weather.
One of the young men, England reported, had “informed his family of the attempt, causing them to know not to expect to hear from him that soon.”
After 24 hours with no contact, however, the family member was not content to wait, and called White County emergency services.
"Members of Sparta-White County Rescue Squad, as well as members from all volunteer fire departments and Sparta FD, White County Emergency Medical Services, White County Sheriff Department, Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency and White County Emergency Management Service began the trip to the natural area on Bon Air Mountain to search for the men in the sub-freezing temperatures," reported England.
“As the search continued into the dark of night, more four-wheelers and emergency personnel joined in the hunt, while members of Community Volunteer Emergency Service Team (CVEST) assisted in bringing food, warm drinks and other needs to the searchers."
Helicopters were also deployed. It was estimated that more than 20 searchers were involved.
The kicker? Once located - about five hours later- the young men refused to abandon their survival excursion.
The pair had to be convinced – no doubt by some tired and cold volunteers – to come back home.