B.C’s miracle survivors: A look back at past backcountry rescues

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B.C’s miracle survivors
WATCH: Wednesday’s rescue of a dog walker who’d been missing in Coquitlam for two days is just the latest of a number of miracle survival stories through the years. Grace Ke reports – Nov 22, 2017

After having gone missing for two days, Annette Poitras and three dogs were found alive in Coquitlam’s backcountry on Wednesday.

Poitras is expected to make a full recovery.

The dogs are in good condition considering their two nights in the woods.

WATCH: Dog walker and dogs found safe and sound

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While their happy ending was a near-miracle, it’s not the only time a case of a person missing in the backcountry has ended with good news.

Here is a look back at some other remarkable rescues:

Julie Abrahamsen

In January 2015, the 20-year-old Julie Abrahamsen from Norway was snowboarding when she lost her way. For three days she rationed her pasta, waded through creeks and huddled under rocks and tree branches before a helicopter finally spotted her.

“I understood that I was in so much more trouble than I thought,” she said.

Julie left for Whistler Blackcomb on a Wednesday. Her father said he and his wife first became concerned the following day when he hadn’t heard from her, but figured she was out with friends. By Friday, they were worried sick as Whistler RCMP and Search and Rescue began their search.

On Saturday, a friend of Abrahamsen sent him a text message that read “Julie found alive. Call me.”

“In that split second it transformed my life from panic and grief to an awesome party,” the father said.

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Sebastien Boucher

In December 2012, snowboarder Sebastien Boucher went out of bounds and quickly got lost on Cypress Mountain. He spent two nights in freezing temperatures with no food or water. He was on the move the whole time, taking huge risks to find safety before finally being rescued.

At one point, he had to jump onto a tree, some 50 feet off the ground.

“I had to grab that branch and if I missed that branch I was dead,” he said.

North Shore Rescue scoured the mountain for three days looking for Boucher and had all but given up hope of finding him alive when crews spotted fresh tracks in the snow.

Boucher was found hours later and rescued by helicopter. He was cold but not seriously injured.

Boucher was so grateful, he later raised $10,000 for North Shore Rescue.

Joe Spring

When rescuers spotted 19-year-old Joe Spring in his wrecked car they expected to find a body. But he had miraculously survived eight days without food or water at the bottom of an embankment on Highway 97 north of Williams Lake.

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“I didn’t know what time of day it was,” he said following the rescue. “I was squinting so it was hard to tell. I was half-conscious most of the time.”

– With files from Grace Ke and Christine Tam

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