Salem dog spends five nights stranded in Oregon Cascades - KPTV - FOX 12

Salem dog spends five nights stranded in Oregon Cascades

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SISTERS, OR (KPTV) -

A Salem dog has quite the story to tell after spending five days in the Oregon Cascades. 

Jennifer Atkinson said she was were walking her family's small dog Bella last Saturday near the Autobahn Tube hill at Hoodoo Ski Area. 

She said a much larger dog, off leash, came charging towards them, sending Bella running scared up the hill and into the woods.

"Someone said she bolted right up and over the snowbank and she disappeared," Atkinson said.

There were a handful of sightings of the dog throughout the day. One of those sightings was of tracks near the Ed Thurston chain at the ski area. 

"He followed the tracks up Hayrick but he couldn't follow them anymore because the snow was really deep like you would sink right up to your knees in it," Atkinson said. 

Employees of the ski area, ski patrol, and friends kept an eye out for any sign of the dog, but there was nothing for five days. They alerted all the nearby animal shelters, but nothing ever came to fruition.

Then on Thursday, Atkinson, her son, and her husband all headed up early in the morning to see if they could follow the tracks up the side of Hayrick Butte. 

"Jake climbed way up to where the snow and the rock slide meet about half way up, and he found her in a small cave," Atkinson said. "He found her in a crevasse about the size of an underground cabinet."

She said the dog was cold, a bit scared but ready to head down the hundreds of feet of the steep mountain slope.

"He reached in and grabbed her, put her in a coat and carried her back down the mountain."

After a nice rest, Atkinson says Bella is back to her old self, a lighter after surviving several cold nights in the Central Oregon Cascades.

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