It was a day like any other for “The Wild Bunch,” a group of ATV enthusiasts who love to explore the trails of Utah’s state and national parks.
The Wild Bunch, known professionally as the Utah ATV Association, works as a non-profit with the goal of “[preserving] the trail rider’s access to National Forest, State Parks, and BLM Lands, and to protect the resources of these lands.”
While enjoying a ride through the rocks and cliffs of Moab, the group ran into a spot of trouble — one that would take all their skills as outdoorsmen, riders, and friends to overcome.
Vickie and Bill Bagshaw, two Utah ATV Association members, were following the group on a ride near the slick, rocky cliffs of Moab. With them were their regular traveling companions, golden retriever siblings Summer and Winter. “They’ve been with us on literally every ride; they go with us everywhere,” Vickie explained to Fox 13 News.
Somehow, Summer stepped off of her ATV and began to slip down the cliff face. There were only moments to act before she would lose her footing and fall! “I was like, ‘This can’t happen like this. I have to do something,’” explained group president Steven Hawkins to the outlet.
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What happened next, caught on video, was a truly dramatic rescue. Vickie Bagshaw told Summer to wait, and fortunately, the obedient pup remembered her training. By staying put, Summer was at less risk of slipping on the sheer rock face.
As she balanced, other members of the “Wild Bunch” began forming a human chain and lowering a rope. The team has practiced a variety of different rescue techniques, and they’ve put them to use during previous rides in the Utah desert.
Bagshaw, who notes she is usually “terrified of heights,” leapt into action and helped pull the pup back up, working with group members standing on a flatter part of the cliff face.
It wasn’t just the Wild Bunch — strangers passing by had stopped to lend a hand as well. Fortunately, the group was able to execute the rescue perfectly and no one was hurt.
The group, who regularly comes together for charities like Make a Wish and the cancer-research-supporting Ride For Life, had successfully rescued one of their own!
“We knew we had a good group of friends, but I will tell you this solidified it and I think it’s made us all a lot closer,” Bagshaw explained. For her part, Summer hasn’t been dissuaded from joining the Wild Bunch on their next ride. Keep up with the group at their official site or on Facebook, and watch the full video of Summer’s rescue below!
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