Two teenagers were rescued after getting lost in the Grand Canyon for five days, surviving with no water and just two granola bars.
Rowan Fitch and Reese McMichael, both 18, were on a road trip traveling from Jacksonville, Florida, to begin college on the west coast last week.
They decided to take a detour and hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon but got lost, having no water and just two granola bars to share between the two of them.
For five days the boys wandered through the harsh landscape, drinking water out of puddles and sleeping on the ground before they were rescued on Sunday.
Rowan Fitch (right) and Reese McMichael (left), both 18, were rescued after getting lost in the Grand Canyon in Arizona for five days, surviving with no water and just two granola bars
Fitch posted a photo of the two friends covered in dirt and recovering in a rescue helicopter on Instagram.
He wrote: ‘My best friend Resse McMichael and I getting rescued after spending 5 days stranded in the Grand Canyon.
‘For 5 days we rationed 2 granola bars and drank water out of a puddle on the ground, we had no tent or sleeping bags either, we just slept on the ground.
‘I’m extremely proud of Reese for his display of mental toughness and perseverance, also thank you to the park rangers for saving our lives!’
The boys got lost when they decided to wander off the trail in order to have a look around and to have lunch, Fitch said to News 4 Jax.
He added to the news station: ‘We’re hiking up the mountain, and all the sudden we just can’t see where the trail is going anymore. It kind of just disappears.’
The boys got lost when they decided to wander off the trail in order to have a look around and to have lunch. They ran out of water on the first day and drank water from puddles
They spent the next few hours trying to find their way back up the canyon but the path kept getting steeper and at that point they knew they could be in trouble.
Fitch and McMichael had both ran out of water on the first day and they realized they each only had one granola bar.
Fitch said: ‘Each day we would eat a piece of it. We found this little puddle on the ground. It looked somewhat clean.’
With temperatures reaching up to 100 degrees Fahrenheit, they decided to conserve their energy by staying in the shade and stop walking.
Fitch added: ‘We had phones, but there’s no cell for service down in the canyon. You just start to think ‘what happens if no one comes to get us?
‘What happens if they don’t even know we’re missing?’
With temperatures reaching up to 100 degrees Fahrenheit, Fitch and McMichael (pictured) decided to conserve their energy by staying in the shade and stop walking
The boys waited five days until they spotted a helicopter in the distance.
They used tree branches and blew a whistle to get the aircraft to spot them.
Fitch said: ‘I’m a lifeguard, so I have this big whistle it is bright orange and I was blowing it. We were waving branches at them.
‘It was euphoric. Me and my friend were both crying tears of happiness.’
When asked if he would go back to the spot where he was stranded for nearly a week, Fitch said to the news outlet: ‘At the Grand Canyon? At least not for a while.
‘If I do ever hike in the Grand Canyon again, I’m going to go with a guide. And I’m going to tell people where I went.’