Twitter photo of lost hiker’s feet helps rescue team to find him

Apr 17, 2021

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

Twitter photo of lost hiker’s feet helps rescue team to find him

Apr 17, 2021

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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Oftentimes, people posting photo of their feet while hiking can be a little annoying. But sometimes, sharing a photo like this can lead to an epic rescue. A hiker lost in the mountains of Southern California was rescued after a Twitter user located him this way. He used nothing but a blurry tweeted photo of – his feet.

Rene Compean (46) was lost in the California mountains and reported missing on 12 April at 6 PM. As The New York Times reports, the rescue teams started searching for him immediately after he was reported missing. However, his phone battery died, so the last photo he sent to his friend was the only thing they could rely on.

Los Angeles County Sheriffs Department (LASD) wrote in a press statement that Compean didn’t turn on his phone’s location, “so team members were unable to get his location code from the photo.” So, LASD turned to social media. They tweeted the low-res photo Compean had sent to his friend hoping someone would recognize the location in it.

The hero of the day was  ham radio operator Benjamin Kuo, known on Twitter as AI6YR. He tweeted a series of satellite images of the Mt. Waterman area along with the location where he thought Compean might have been. Being an avid hiker himself, Kuo recognized the area from a single photo.

https://twitter.com/ai6yrham/status/1382022095127781382

But how? Well, Kuo traces wildfires in the area using satellite cameras. He also has a hobby that really came in handy. “I’ve got a very weird hobby, which is, I love taking a look at photos and figuring out where they’re taken,” Kuo told NBC Los Angeles.

So, he put this hobby of his to a good use. Search and Rescue Teams (SAR) found Compean safe and sound on 13 April, and he met Kuo online the same day. It’s quite a story, and it warms my heart that everything ended well. But who would have thought that an Instagrammable photo of feet could save someone’s life?

[via PetaPixel]

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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2 responses to “Twitter photo of lost hiker’s feet helps rescue team to find him”

  1. Christopher Singleton Avatar
    Christopher Singleton

    Dunja perhaps you should learn why it is so common for hikers/mountaineers to take a landscape picture with their feet in the foreground.

    These kinds of pictures are called a, “Limmer shot” and represent tradition that goes back far before the advent of social media, the internet and even television. Back before athletes and sportsman wore bright colourful clothing adorned with advertising logos.

    The Limmer Custom Boot company has been making custom hiking and climbing boots since the 1929’s. In fact at a time when extreme mountaineering challenges like Everest, K2 and the Eiger often came at the cost of some toes to frostbite. Limmer made custom boots to fit those mutilated feet so that their owners could continue their mountaineering careers.

    It was common at the time for the hiker/mountaineer to take a picture of the Limmer boots in the foreground of the mountain they had climbed and then to send it to the boot company to say, “here are the boots that you made for me and this is where I went with them.”

    A bit of free advertising if you will.

    In the 1970’s when I visited the Limmer Custom Boot Company in New Hampshire . . . the walls were adorned with pictures of the feet of famous mountaineers wearing Limmer boots in front of a mountain(s).

    Get over your idea that pictures of a hikers feet are a little annoying . . . put some boots on and go for a hike.

  2. Jackson Bill Avatar
    Jackson Bill

    A rescue squad is an emergency service that provides technical rescue services, and may also provide emergency medical services and firefighting services. … They may also operate from heavy rescue vehicles or rescue boats. Arborist Boulder