2 women stranded by storm high in Colorado Rockies walk to safety

Sept. 14, 2013 at 1:51 AM
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DENVER, Sept. 14 (UPI) -- Two women caught in an ice storm high in the Colorado Rockies walked out on their own Friday after rescuers were unable to reach them.

Relatives said Suzanne Turell, 33, and Connie Yang, 32, both from York, Maine, reached safety at about noon, The Denver Post reported. They had last been heard from Thursday morning when they sent a text message saying they were stuck on top of Longs Peak and their cellphone was losing power.

"We need help. At top of Longs Peak. 13400 feet. Whiteout snowstorm. No injuries. Iced over risk of hypothermia," the message read.

A rescue team tried to get to them Thursday but had to turn back. Heavy rains in the Rockies this week have caused major flooding.

The National Park Service said another rescue attempt was under way Friday when rangers learned the women were safe.

Both Turell and Yang work for Nemo Equipment, a camping equipment manufacturer in New Hampshire, and are described as experienced hikers and mountaineers.

The Park Service had no word on their condition.

"If they walked off, that's a very good sign, though I'll have to yell at my daughter because it's not the safest thing to do," Michael Turell, Suzanne's father, said. "On the other hand, they'd been up there 48 hours, no one had come to them, so I'm sure they were a little concerned."

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