A 53-year-old man, whose name has not been released, was hiking in the Tahoe National Forest when he fell approximately 70 feet from the top of a ridge.
The man was able to crawl back to camp and make a call to 911. A search-and-rescue team of 25 volunteers searched the woods and, approximately seven hours later, came upon Saul, a black and white border collie jumping up and down and spinning around in circles.
The search and rescue team had narrowed down the man’s location from his phone call. However, one of the rescuers was a friend of the victim and told the searchers to “look for Saul.”
Saul searched for the rescue team and ran about 200 yards to find them. Once he did, he wasted no time in leading the team to his owner, who was lying under an erected shelter made from a camouflage tarp.
Saul’s owner was truly in distress. From his fall and amazing crawl back to his temporary camp, the man had sustained a broken hip and broken ribs.
Sgt. Haack of the Nevada County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue team communicated with his team in the field from a nearby command post. When he heard of the dog and that the team wanted to follow it, he said, “We didn’t put a lot of faith in it, but I do put a lot of faith in our searchers because they’re extremely good at what they do.” Haack told the New York Times.
When the team finally came back and described the incident to Sgt. Haack, he said, “At first we didn’t believe it because it sounded like a movie. When they came back and actually described it to us, the reality was that they had followed the dog directly to the victim.”
The man was airlifted to a hospital within eight hours of his call to 911, thanks to his incredible pup and the quick response of the search and rescue team. Haack said Saul received a “well-deserved dinner” and spent the night at a nonprofit shelter. Saul was reunited with his owner the following day.