Football Friday Night Scoreboard

17-Year-Old Girl Rescued From Ponca Wilderness

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

The Buffalo National River Search and Rescue successfully rescued a 17-year-old girl from the Ponca Wilderness area of the Buffalo National River Park in Newton County, according to Caven Clark, Public Information Officer for the park.

A group of five adults and five youth were backpacking during the cold and wet weather this past weekend.

The weather caused some problems with the group when they tried to hike out of the area they were in.

A park ranger was eventually alerted to their situation and offered to assist with the hike-out. It was at that point that the ranger encountered the 17-year-old girl. Responders were called, and when they arrived, the girl was found semi-conscious with her mother huddled up with her under a wet sleeping bag.

She was eventually put in a heat blanket. After being treated for hypothermia by North Arkansas Regional Medical Center paramedics, she was carried by responders 1.5 miles on a rough muddie trail, across one high creek, to a trail head.

The hiker’s core temperature was 84 degrees when she arrived at the North Arkansas Regional Medical Center. She was treated and released the following day.

Clark wrote in a news release, “Fifty-four responders, primarily volunteers, were involved in the rescue including the following agencies: Buffalo River Search and Rescue Team, Harrison Fire Department, Tri County SAR Team, Mennonite Search and Rescue Services, Newton County Sheriff’s Department and SAR Team, North Arkansas Regional Medical Center, and the Arkansas Forestry Commission.”


  • joesumone

    Why the f__k would you go out in the wilderness when it has been announced in the weather forecasts the previous week that rain and snow would be coming in over the weekend?!? Charge the people for the cost of all the rescue efforts. Dumba$$es.

    • Mavrick

      I understand your frustration, but most folks are not sympathetic towards people who make bad judgment calls like this until they experience such an encounter themselves. You are probably a wise person that has never made such a mistake, but on the other hand your only human. I guess what i’m trying to say is, give the girl a break she’s just 17 years old.

      • joesumone

        @Mavrick-I have common sense. Yes, that is something people fear because they don’t know how to use it. Had the group of ADULTS she was with had any common sense among them, then they would not have gone into the wilderness. I am not frustrated, far from it. In fact, I’m pretty sure they learned a lesson, and to re-inforce it, they should pay for the rescue operation. Plain and simple. If they all had died, well then there would be a group nomination for the annual Darwin Awards.

  • Elaphas

    Most people who venture out of the city are not prepared for the “wilderness” under any conditions, especially in weather like this.

  • Mavrick

    The artical states the girl was found huddled up with her mother.Why was there no more mention of her mother and her condition. I dont like when they leave important details out.

  • just a guy

    There are likely a lot of details that have been left out that would color the situation differently. Maybe the young girl took ill unrelated to the weather and was unable to walk out on her own?

Comments are closed.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.