Lost Eagle Cap hiker found safe

By By Bill Rautenstrauch The Observer September 05, 2012 02:21 pm
A Portland man lost in the Eagle Cap Wilderness in Union County over the weekend was found safe and unhurt Sunday.


Fred Hawkins of Union County Search and Rescue said the man, Timothy Murphy, started a hike into the wilderness area Saturday from the Catherine Creek trailhead. Murphy, who had not planned an overnight trip, walked seven or eight miles into the wilderness area, then realized he was lost.

Hawkins said the 57-year-old Murphy called 911 dispatch on his cell phone Sunday morning, though the connection was poor and the dispatcher was unable to get an exact location. The dispatcher did manage to narrow the location down by pinging the cell phone.

Union County Sheriff’s Deputy Tony Humphries later made contact with Murphy by phone and though the connection was poor managed to determine where Murphy had begun his hike. Search and Rescue was activated at 10 a.m. Sunday.

A horse team consisting of Search and Rescue members Rick Hagen, Traci Black and Heather Atkins started up the trail about 2 p.m. Hawkins said that about 5 p.m., a horseback rider on his way down found Murphy sitting by the side of the trail. 

The horse team was a short distance away, and the rescue was completed without incident by about 7 p.m.