Another Park County resident was reunited with his dog after a good Samaritan who found her while hiking was able to rescue her from the bottom of a 25-foot mine shaft in Fairplay with two friends and some climbing gear. Thanks to social media, the brown mixed-breed dog was identified and returned the very next day. The rescue comes on the heels of another lost dog story, where an Alma family was reunited with their lab-pit bull mix after she had been missing for five weeks and was found on Mount Bross.
About a week prior to the rescue, Preston Gladd was out hiking in the Beaver Creek area of Fairplay when he heard growling coming from a mine shaft. Thinking it was a wild animal, he ignored the sounds and continued on. He kept thinking about the noises he heard, however, so on Wednesday, Oct. 18, after returning home from a vacation, Gladd headed back out to the same area with his dogs. As he got closer to the mine shaft, this time he heard barking.
“I looked inside and saw her down in the bottom, trapped,” the Fairplay resident said.
He left and returned with reinforcements — his girlfriend, Portia Scovern, his roommate, Gannon Ingels, and some climbing gear.
The pair was able to lower Gladd down into the shaft, where he tied a harness around the dog to pull her out.
Although skinny and dehydrated, the dog — whom they later found out was named Cheyenne — didn’t have any injuries after falling 25 feet into the shaft.
Editor’s Note: We’re so glad the pup is okay! Remember, however, it’s never a good idea to go into Colorado’s old mines. They can be very dangerous!
FAIRPLAY – A group of hikers in Park County saved a dog’s life after hearing anguished barks coming from an abandoned mine shaft.
Preston Gladd was hiking last week near Beaver Creek in Park County when he heard some growling or whining coming from a tiny entrance to an old mine.
He assumed it was a wild animal and left it alone, especially since he was with his own dogs at the time and wanted to keep them safe.
But, Preston thought about it some more. After a week of contemplation, he decided to go back.
On his second trip, he heard distinct barking and realized it was a dog. Preston ran home to get his climbing buddy, Gannon, and his girlfriend, Portia, to help.
Preston and Gannon came back with Portia, and, using their climbing equipment, harnessed in and rappelled into the shaft about 20 feet down.
At the bottom was the dog – skinny and scared. They would later learn her name is Cheyenne.
The friends took Cheyenne to a local vet and discovered she wasn’t micro chipped. She had a collar on, but had no tag or phone number listed to call.
Thanks to a public post on her Facebook page, Portia was able to get in touch with Cheyenne’s family after hundreds of comments from the community.
Many people posted a ‘lost dog’ post from the South Park Bulletin from Oct. 6, and sure enough, it was Cheyenne!
While they waited for the owner to coordinate getting her back, the friends took Cheyenne home, and with advice from a veterinarian, got her fed, washed, and hydrated.
Not even a full day later, on Thursday, the owner had been contacted via Facebook, and a friend of his from the Fairplay area was working to bring Cheyenne back to her family near Denver.
We love a happy ending!
And we love keeping Coloradans safe: so we’ll say it again. Many potential hazards in old mines can’t be seen by the naked eye.
“People make assumptions that it’s less hazardous than it really is,” Graves said.