Lost Hikers Found at Garden of the Gods

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By WSIL Manager

HARRISBURG -- Two groups of hikers were found Sunday after reporting being lost at Garden of the Gods.

The first call came in to Saline County Central Dispatch just after 3 p.m. Sunday. Three hikers from Dawson Springs, Kentucky had lost their way after leaving the trail. The group was found about an hour later.

Saline County received the second call around 7:20 p.m. Sunday. Five hikers from Hazel, Kentucky reported they had left the main trail and weren't able to return to it. Crews located the hikers around 10 p.m. and brought them out of the forest just before midnight.

No one was injured in either incident.

Saline County Sheriff Keith Brown offers tips for anyone visiting Garden of the Gods and the Shawnee National Forest:

* Stay on the main trails
* Wear appropriate clothing and shoes
* Bring water
* Let someone know which trail or direction you are headed
* Give an approximate time you will be returning
* Charge your cell phone

"When calling 911 the call may bounce to Saline County or Johnson County and even to a location in Kentucky, so be prepared to explain where you started your hike," added Sheriff Brown.

The Saline County Sheriff's Office, Equality Fire Department and Illinois State Police assisted in the searches.
 

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