Outdoors

Family: Woman disenchanted with woods

BAKER CITY, Ore. - After surviving 13 days in the woods with no gear and light clothing, 76-year-old Doris Anderson has resolved never to return to the wilderness, one of her daughters says.

Anderson got lost on a hunting trip with her husband but was found last week after authorities had scaled back their search for her.

She was hypothermic and incoherent when two officers found her in the Wallowa Mountains on Thursday, authorities said.

But daughter Barbara Moore told the Baker City Herald on Tuesday that her mother had gotten out of her hospital bed twice, was eating bananas and mashed potatoes and gravy, and was being fitted for a set of dentures to replace those she lost.

"Mom had a wonderful day yesterday," Moore said. "Everyone was saying, 'Wow!' 'Incredible!' 'Like night and day difference.' "

Moore said her mother had begun to remember details, but the family will keep them private until she is ready to tell her story to reporters.

But, Moore said, her mother did say it was a long, scary experience.

"She said she's not going back to the forest," Moore said. "It has nothing for her."

Anderson is from Sandy in Clackamas County east of Portland and the family is still considering moving her to a hospital closer to home, Moore said.

Anderson, who was described as unfamiliar with the outdoors, was on a hunting trip with her husband when they got stuck on a Forest Service road just south of the Eagle Cap Wilderness Area in Eastern Oregon.

Her husband, Harold, 74, broke his wrist unloading an all-terrain vehicle. They tried to walk for help but became exhausted, and she turned back toward the vehicle. A hunting party later found Harold Anderson, but there was no sign of his wife until two officers found her 13 days later.

Searchers say she survived thunderstorms and temperature that ranged from the 80s in the daytime to the low 30s at night, and they believe she drew water from a stream near where she was found.

  Comments