Man Rescued After Getting Lost in Rock Bridge State Park

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COLUMBIA - Tim Clouse was walking his dog, Halen, in Rock Bridge Memorial State Park Friday afternoon when he got lost without a cell phone or a coat.

"I was pretty scared. I wasn't sure what my wife was thinking and if I was going to get back or not. It was pitch black. I ended up just walking in circles," he said.  

Clouse's wife was waiting for him in the car in the parking lot outside of Devil's Ice Box. She called the police after Clouse was missing for nearly three hours. With temperatures quickly dropping and the sun setting, his wife began to think the worst.

"He's got a few medical issues that we were worried about," said Corporal Scott Ballard with the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

A search team consisting of more than 20 people from the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Boone County Fire Department, Boone County Sheriff's Department and Rock Bridge Park rangers were on the scene searching through the woods for Clouse. Around 6:30 p.m. a search helicopter from University Hospital arrived to help with efforts. Clouse was found around 7 p.m.

"First I had to climb over a barbed wire fence, so I housed her (the dog) over it, she was kind of freaked out. Then there was a place in the barbed wire I could bend down so I jumped about five feet," Clouse said.

After walking thorough a field, Clouse found a house and called for help. That's when an ambulance arrived and discovered Clouse and his dog.

Both Clouse and Halen were unharmed after the ordeal, and after a little water the dog was in good spirits, wagging her tail and enjoying attention from family.

"My wife is really happy, I was worried about her a lot," Clouse said.

Clouse said, other than a couple scratches from the trees, he's feeling really good.