Concussion Leaves Hunter Lost in Colorado Mountains

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New Castle, Colorado resident Dudley Blaylock wasn't far from his hometown looking to fill his bull elk tag. He had traveled to nearby Meadow Lake, in the White River National Forest north of Rifle, Colorado. He left his camp Saturday morning to find that bull elk. It was almost dark when he saw a 6 point bull elk, and followed it. Then he remembers falling, and that is about the end of what he remembers. While falling the butt of his rifle smacked him in the head.

He doesn't remember any of Saturday night, the next thing he does remember is Sunday afternoon when a helicopter flew by. He waved, and continued hunting, not aware that he was in trouble, but things were fuzzy for him. Meanwhile search and rescue teams were out looking for Blaylock, a helicopter from Colorado National Guard had been dispatched as well to look for the missing hunter.

Monday afternoon Blaylock's memory kicks in again. There is snow, he is cold, and starting to realize he may be in trouble. He can not start a fire with either of his lighters. Then he hears and sees a helicopter again, this time he waves it down with his orange hat.

The medic came down and asked me my name and I told him. And he said, 'Are you hurt?' And I said, 'Yeah, I'm hurt.' I couldn't put my thoughts together. I couldn't think of anything. Later on they told me at the hospital that I had a concussion."

Blaylock is at home recovering. He is very thankful to the search and rescue teams that were out looking for him and eventually saved him. From


hunter25's picture

Interesting story snf zi've

Interesting story snf zi've been watching this on the news as this is just a few miles down the road from where I live. I don't know the guy but I'm sure glad he was able to get out safely. It could have been far worse than it was. I wonder hoe he made it through that first night with no memory of it at all? It gets pretty cold out there in the evening. Like has been said this is one of the dangers when hunting alone. When I went on my mountain goat hunt I had a friend for a few days and then was left alone. I didn't get one and being a lone was one of the reasons I slowed down as some of the places I was trying to go I never would have been found if I broke a leg or something and I ended up turning back. At least this story has a good ending to it.

SGM's picture

It is amazing how fast a good

It is amazing how fast a good hunt can turn in something bad. I guess that is why I dod not like hunting alone even thou I have in the past. I never really thought that my own gun could knock me out during a fall but can see how it could happen very easily. Not sure how many folks use lighters but I never have. I always take water proof matches in a zip lock bag and at least fire starter kits that will start even if wet or raining. Glad that it all worked out and he is safe but sure could have turned out allot worse. Hats off to Search and Rescue for another job well done. 

Retired2hunt's picture

  Whoa - That is one lucky


Whoa - That is one lucky hunter!  I'm happy that this came to a good conclusion - maybe not as happy as Mr. Blaylock!

Search and Rescue people are a special group.  They often are doing this effort for no pay.  And kudos to the Colorado National Guard helecopter crew that was able to find him.

I always carry waterproof matches along with a lighter just because of being aware that one or the other just may not work due to conditions. 

And I totally agree with you Ca_Vermonster - it is better to hunt with a partner just for this possible scenario... or make certain to tell somebody when to expect your return.  They way I read this it appeared because Mr. Blaylock did not return to camp that evening or didn't check in thus the search for him then started. 






numbnutz's picture

This could have been a lot

This could have been a lot worse for this man. Thats the only thing about hunting alone that scares me. If I feel or broke my leg or something like that I would be stuck. This is the reason my wife wants me to get a Spot locator or something similair. I don't disagree with her at all. When I was single and didn't have kids I didn't much care or worry to much but now that I have people depending on me I need to do whatever I can to make sure I make it home in one piece. I'm very happy this man made it home safe. I have had a few concussions in my day from playing footbal and it can be a very scary thing not remebering anything for hours or even days. Reading this story makes me want to put a Spot at the top of my list of new hunting gear. I have been doing more backcountry hunting solo and want to be able to make it home safe to  my family.

Ca_Vermonster's picture

Wow, talk about scary.  And

Wow, talk about scary.  And to think he didn't even really realize that he was 'lost".  Glad to see it all worked out.

This makes you think about the personal locators even more.  If you are in trouble, you can hit one of those, then sit back and wait.  But, I guess in a case like this, he didn't even know he was in trouble until the following day, so that would be an interesting predicament to be in. Scary to think that he was walking around in the cold and snow for 2 days with no knowledge of the situation.

I wonder about these type of things when I am planning my hunt for next year, and all the more reason to realyl try and find a hunting partner.  An elk or any other game animal is not worth you life.  Well, maybe a 380 class bull, but that would be about it... Wink


I always carry a lighter,

I always carry a lighter, waterproof matches, fire sticks, and napkins or paper in a ziplock bag.  You never know when you will need to start a fire.

I also carry a GPS(Can't always count on), a map of the area and 2 compasses.  You never know when a compass can break or be lost.

We were coming out at Dark last Sunday night with headlamps when we got turned around.  We both thought we need to head west to get back to camp but the GPs was telling us North East.  After a half a mile of walking the wrong way we saw a road from the mountain top.  Decided to walk to the road to be safe.  Turns out, the GPS was right.  I very rarely get turned around, but it does happen.