National Parks

Lost Hunter Survived 19 Days in California Forest

By hunting for food, of course.


The 72-year-old hunter who was lost for more than two weeks in a Northern California forest survived by eating squirrels and other animals he shot with his rifle and by making small fires and packing leaves and grasses around his body to stay warm, according to his family.

Deer hunter Gene Penaflor was found Saturday in Mendocino National Forest by other hunters, who carried him to safety in a makeshift stretcher, the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office said.

Penaflor had disappeared after heading out with a partner during the first week of deer hunting season in the rugged mountains of far Northern California, a trip he takes annually.