Los Angeles real estate broker Ed Rosenthal recently pulled off a big sale, and to celebrate he decided to get out of town and go for a hike, something he had done many times in the past. Little did he know that that hike would leave him scrambling for his life, even as he thought he was on his last trek.
On September 24th Rosenthal made the trip to Joshua Tree National Park where he says that he took a wrong turn and lost the trail. What seemed like a simple mistake sent him hiking off into a remote area of the park where he quickly found himself disoriented and completely lost.
Over the next six days he wandered the park looking for landmarks that could lead him back to civilization. He says that he would spend the hot days resting in the shade of a tree while at night he would walk, usually downhill, to try to stay warm in the cool desert nights. Eventually he hiked into East Wide Canyon, which descends to the park’s southern boundary. It was there that he was found last Thursday by a search and rescue team that spotted him from the air. He was just eight miles from where he had wandered off the trail.
While lost in the wild, Rosenthal wrote letters to his wife and daughter to tell them that he loved them. He also left instructions on where to donate some of his money to charity and passed on advice to his business partners as well. The lost hiker also wrote a chronicle of his trek that is reportedly the story of a man who believed he was going to die alone in the backcountry.
After his rescue, Rosenthal spent a few days in the hospital where he was treated for exposure and dehydration. He was released on Monday and is in fine condition after his ordeal. My guess is his family will buy him a compass and/or a GPS for Christmas this year.
[Photo credit: Matthew Field via WikiMedia]