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Rescue of Family Lost in Grand Canyon Snowstorm Called a 'Miracle'

  • VOA News

FILE - Freshly fallen snow is plowed into several piles, creating a barrier at the main entrance to Grand Canyon National Park, Oct. 10, 2013.

A U.S. family stranded in two locations in an Arizona forest after their vehicle got stuck in a snowstorm have been rescued in what one sheriff's official called "a Christmas miracle."

Karen and Eric Klein of Easton, Pennsylvania, and their son, Isaac, 10, became stranded on a forest road Thursday after they found that a route to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon was closed for the winter and they sought an alternate way, said Coconino County Deputy Sheriff Jim Driscoll. A digital mapping service does show that an alternate route exists, but it's not passable, Driscoll said.

Karen Klein, 46, set out for help first, alone; she is a triathlete and marathon runner who her family believed had the best chance of finding help, Driscoll said. She hiked 44 kilometers through rugged terrain before taking refuge Friday afternoon in a cabin at a seasonally closed park entrance, he said. Searchers on snowmobiles tracked and found the exhausted woman Saturday morning.

In the meantime, her husband and son were rescued. Driscoll said other searchers found them late Friday after they had hiked to an area far from their vehicle, where they found cellphone service to call for help. That contact set the search for Karen Klein in motion.

Eric Klein, 47, and his son were treated for exposure and released from a Kanab, Utah, hospital; Karen Klein was taken to a St. George, Utah, hospital for treatment of what Driscoll called "pretty severe" injuries to her hands from the cold weather.

Some information for this report came from AP.

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