Taylor Cox interviews a friend who was lost in the wilderness near Bear Lake and almost didn’t make it out alive. The following is a story and video created to tell Scott Long’s story.<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/93335701″>scotts story</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/amyelizabethcox”>amy elizabeth cox</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>.</p>
On August 26, 2011, Scott Long, an 18-year old student at the University of Utah, survived a near-death experience near Bear Lake in Idaho that would leave him wondering how many lives he might actually live.
“All I knew is I had to figure somethin’ out that would keep me alive” stated Log with a stressed look on his face. “I had my empty motorcycle, my helmet, and some nasty sagebrush. That’s it!”
Long was lost for thirteen hours in the Bear Lake Canyons that night and due to his diabetic condition he experienced several life threatening moments.
“I’ve had a few pretty dumb things happen to me in my life,” admitted Long. He explained briefly about his other near death experiences.
“I smashed my truck into a tree one day, um, I woke up to my heart going like fifty billion miles an hour, I dunno, the list goes on,” said Long. Although he has had several experiences, Bear Lake seemed to stand out the most.
Long and his friends had gone out into the mountains on their motorcycles late one afternoon in search for a tiny town near Bear Lake called Pegram.
“You can only get there on motorcycles,” he added. They left and were determined to not go back to the cabin until they discovered this treasure. Long, having suffered from type 1 diabetes since the age of nine, realized his blood-sugar was low while riding the dirt paths to Pegram.
“We got there finally and all I can really remember is racing some train on my dirt bike and feeling like crap,” continued Long. His friends also realized his blood sugar was low and offered to ask for food from someone in town. He refused he said, and being the stubborn person he is when “low” he decided to take the hour and a half trip back to the cabin.
Over the next eight hours or so Long’s friends and family aimlessly searched the mountainous dirt paths for him. He never arrived back to the cabin and the frantic group left immediately in a desperate search of Long. “We looked and looked but couldn’t find him anywhere, and it was gettin’ pretty dark too so we felt kinda useless at that point,” said Brandon Brown, a close friend of Long.
Long crashed several times as he road his motorcycle in an unconscious state of mind. “I was way too low to be riding a motorcycle and I couldn’t figure out anything at all. I needed something to eat, so after I crashed the last time I rolled over into some bush and grabbed a handful of leaves and ate ‘em.” Long laid there in the dirt path for several hours hoping and praying someone would find him. He was the only one to wear a helmet that afternoon and it was all he had to keep him warm as the night passed by.
The group continued to look for him and in desperate measures called Search and Rescue for their assistance. Long expressed, “I just remember laying there thinking I was gonna die and looking up at the stars and seeing so many. There was like a shooting star every other second.” He then added, “Then there was this huge one that went forever. It just kept coming out of the corner of my eye.” Long then looked to get a better view of the star and it was the headlights of a Search and Rescue truck. Attempting to run down the trail to meet the truck Long passed out once again. He stated his name to the crew and they helped him. He was given a large Pepsi, a Reese’s peanut butter cup, and a seventeen mile ride back to the cabin. Arriving shortly after to the worried group he greeted them all with a hug. “They were so mad at me,” said Long. “I probably deserved it though.”
Long feels lucky to be alive today after going through some close calls. He said he knows he’s alive because he has things to do in this life that he hasn’t done yet.
“Everyone says I have nine lives and I’ve already used up quite a few,” he says. “We’ll see what happens with the ones I got left.”