(LEX 18) Rescue crews are still reflecting on the four-day long search for a missing man in Red River Gorge. The search ended when a cadaver dog found the body of 29-year-old Les Reynolds. A rescue squad member had words of caution for even the most experienced hikers.
"The forest welcomes you in. She’s beautiful, but she’s deadly," said Lisa Johnson with the Powell County Rescue Squad.
Les Reynolds had hiked in the Gorge before, but last Tuesday night, he texted his mom saying that he was lost.
"My theory is that he knew Indian Staircase like the back of his hand. But you never can take for granted the forest. It changes daily, nightly, and I would never suggest that you hike at night," said Johnson.
Reynolds was never heard from again. As the sun rose Saturday morning, his body was found.
"I’m glad we found closure for the family, but it just leaves an open wound in our heart. It does," Johnson told LEX 18.
Her advice for any hiker, first-time or experienced, is to have a charged phone, proper footwear, a flashlight, water, and food, as well as a whistle. She says to remember what parking lot you’re in and never hike alone.
"And it is fun hiking, it’s beautiful. But Mother Nature can be very deceiving," she said.
Tips for Hiking:
– always have two people hiking with you…NEVER HIKE ALONE
– Always carry a flashlight
– Wear proper footwear
– Stay put at night
– Always tell someone where you’re going
– Remember what parking lot you’re in
– Water and food with you