AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Two teenagers, rescued after spending two nights stranded in the mountains, continue to recover after being released from University of Colorado Hospital with minor injuries, frostbite only to their toes and one thumb.
Rescue crews found Tommy Hendricks, 18, and Matt Smith, 17, on Wednesday afternoon. They hadn’t been heard from since Monday evening when they summited the Mount of the Holy Cross in Eagle County.
After an extensive search, a Black Hawk helicopter spotted the teens at an elevation of approximately 12,000 feet. It turns out they had gotten lost in a whiteout during a snowstorm.
The area where they became lost is called the “Bermuda Triangle of the Rockies.”
“When we were in that meadow we just kind of, we were praying to God because He was definitely with us the whole time. It was probably the only thing that was keeping us alive and our ability to know that we were going to get back down safely,” said Hendricks.
“To kind of give up and say, ‘No, I’m going to hand it over to God, He’s in control of this. He’ll give me what I need to get out of here.’ The next thing we know, we’re helicoptered out,” said Smith.
The teens were initially taken to Vail Valley Medical Center and then transferred to UCH in Aurora. UCH has a special treatment, one of the few in the country, for frostbite. They were released late Friday afternoon.
The teens are now recovering at their homes in Colorado Springs.