Missing bird watcher rescued after a long night with injuries in the rain

By Jason Nguyen

Published 07/29 2014 10:45AM

Updated 07/29 2014 11:09AM

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 UTAH) - A bird watcher was stranded on top of City Creek Canyon all night.

He had to deal with complete darkness, lots of rain and dense vegetation on top of his normal hike.

The hiker wasn't found too far away from his car. He was about 6 miles into the canyon.

The sheriffs department was able to use a grid search to locate him.

Three departments helped locate a 74-year-old man named Richard Hughes. His family reported him missing at 10:30 last night.

“He is an avid bird watcher and he came up the canyon about 3:30-4 to look at some birds,” said Capt. John Cardona with the Salt Lake City Police Department.

An infrared helicopter was flown over the area to help find Hughes.

Search and Rescue Crews were able to find him with a grid search just as the sun came up.

“He's a little tired, perhaps a little delirious. I think he lost his way trying to come down,” said the Captain. “His cloths were a little ripped. There was some blood on his knee and his foot looked a little damaged so it is possible that he fell and received a concussion.”

Cell phone service in the City Creek Canyon was pretty much non-existent.

“There is nothing really up there as far as food, water, shelter, cell phones to call 911. You are up there in the mountains,” Capt. Cardona added. “You may just be outside of Salt Lake City a couple miles but you might as well be in the wilderness.“

Hughes is at an area hospital recovering from his injuries.

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