Teens survive 4 days lost on frozen tundra
Rescuers found 15-year-old Isajah "Willie" Nastapoka huddled in a snow den he'd dug.
February 15th, 2011
10:58 AM ET

Teens survive 4 days lost on frozen tundra

Two boys have been rescued after being lost in the subarctic wilderness for four days, Canadian media report.

Isajah "Willie" Nastapoka, 15, and Kasudluak Kasudluak, 17, became separated while on a day trip to hunt polar bear, the CBC reported.

Their snowmobile ran out of gas about 19 miles outside Inukjuak, their Inuit village, which is just 7 degrees south of the Arctic Circle in far northern Quebec, authorities said. They had little water or food, and the temperature plunged to 30 below zero Fahrenheit, with a wind chill factor of 50 below, according to a Nunatsiaq News story in the Montreal Gazette.

The boys became separated on their third night on the tundra. Kasudluak kept walking, but Isajah dug a hole in the snow to protect himself from the wind and cold, according to reports.

Airborne searchers found the abandoned snowmobile and commenced a ground search. They found Isajah in his snow den on the fourth day, alive but suffering from severe hypothermia and frostbite. Kasudluak was found a few hours later, still walking and with minor injuries.

Isajah was flown to a hospital in Montreal, where he may lose several toes because of the frostbite, reports said.

"Nobody was expecting to find them alive," Simeonie Nalukturuk, a local who participated in the search, told the Toronto Star. "But we did."

Post by:
Filed under: Bears • Canada • Winter weather • World
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. Jeff

    praise be to Torngasak for keeping these young inuits alive.

    February 15, 2011 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  2. Trevv

    i like eggs

    February 15, 2011 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |
  3. Susan28

    What a story they'll have to tell their grandchildren! Good Luck to them both!

    February 15, 2011 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
  4. matt

    These boys im glad to here made it out. I hope they recoperate and get their polar bear soom. They also could of used some whiskey to have kept them warm at night, I always bring a bottle of Alberta Premium with me in the bush just in case an incident like this arises.

    February 15, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • silvershado

      That old-school remedy, alcohol, hastens death.

      February 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • RosaFranklin

      silvershado is right, alcohol just makes you feel warmer, while your body actually loses more heat. Please be careful when you're out in the cold!

      February 15, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Golden God

    I'm sure they will be featured on the next episode of "I Shouldn't be Alive"

    February 15, 2011 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Nerraw

    I'm glad to hear that they survived. That being said, I know its apart of their culture to hunt polar bears, but they really shouldn't given the low polar bear population. Polar Bears may be extinct by the end of this decade.

    February 15, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      "I know its apart of their culture to hunt polar bears, but they really shouldn't given the low polar bear population. Polar Bears may be extinct by the end of this decade."

      Great analysis, Nerraw, and fine writing. Now get back on the peace bus. As for the two boys who went for bear without enough gas, food, or water - I hope they don't represent the next generation of Inuits. Really, really hope.

      February 15, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • azbearhuntr

      There are plenty of polar bears for the natives to hunt, also the "gone in a decade" lies need to stop, that is based on Al Gore type predictions that have been proven incorrect over and over. In response to the person who said they should have brought whiskey, alcohol makes the person feel warmer but in reality it quickens hypothermia...it was actaully featured on mythbusters but has been known to survivalists for quite some time now.

      February 15, 2011 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Keven

      azbearhuntr, wow, what world are you in? The Arctic has melted so much, country are now vying for oil and gas rights because it has unreachable. California had the worst drought and the worst storms in it's history. Here in NJ, we had a record setting number of heat waves this summer since they started recording temperatures.
      Yeah, keep your head in the sand and you won't see it coming

      February 15, 2011 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dick

      Let me guess you also belive in "Global Warming"

      February 15, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dick

      Let me guess you also belive in Global Warming

      February 15, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dee

      Dick, there's no such thing as believing or not believing in the global warming. There's only understanding or not understanding it.

      Or, as likely in your case, not wanting to understand it.

      And the prediction isn't that they'll be extinct in a decade, but that they will be seriously endangered – enough to stop white US hunters from coming north to bag their rug.

      February 15, 2011 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • KAJD

      Dick...you're a Dick. If you don't believe that our climate is changing, you need to go back to school. For the 2 Inuit boys and their families, I am happy they survived this ordeal!

      February 15, 2011 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Yvonne Robinson

    Amazing God He always knows whats Best & He always have our back Allah Akkbar!!

    February 15, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  8. matt

    Hard alcohol would of helped them stay warm at night.

    February 15, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • azbearhuntr

      ummmm again no, alcohol of any kind (unless they were burning it in a stove or something) would actually hasten their hypothermia, look it up before posting hillbilly remedies.

      February 15, 2011 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Joe

    While agree that weather patterns across the globe have been out of the norm for our respected lifetime, but to think that we as people have any control over it is just wishful thinking. This world has been around for billions of years and gone through many periods of cooling and heating any scientist or politician trying to tell you can make a difference just wants your money.

    February 15, 2011 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • sssimon

      Obviously you have no idea what science is. Just another point of view eh? Wishful thinking? Science is in the end a quest for truth. All the available evidence is weighed as objectively as possible and working theory are drawn from the evidence and they are put out there to be proved or disproved as more information becomes available. Most of the worlds climate scientists – 97% – do accept as a valid working theory Anthropogenic Climate Change. Period.

      February 15, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. azbearhuntr

    Kevin, I actually believe in global warming and never claimed it wasn't true. What I meant was that Al Gore type predictions have been proven false, we may be warming but the polar bears will not be extinct in 10 years becuase of it. When you make over the top "predictions" based on shaky data you might grab headlines but in the end you will have a harder time convincing people of your cause. There are tens of thousands of polar bears in the Artic and just becuase one was taped floating far out to sea (after a huge storm mind you, they forgot to mention that over at NBC I suppose) doesn't mean they are all drowning as I type this. My head is not in the sand my friend, I just don't jump on the alarmist bandwagon and I certainly entertain fact more than prediction from someone who stands to gain more money when more people believe him. Have a good day sir.

    February 15, 2011 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • sssimon

      The prediction that polar bears as a species will become endangered is based on the fact that every year there is less and less ice in the arctic and polar bears need ice to hunt seals, their primary source of food. They pretty much starve during the warm ice free months and make up for it in the winter. This year for example hudson bay was 2 months late freezing. That was an extra 2 months without food that polar bears are just not used to. And this year we are seeing the least amount of polar ice every recorded. And the ice is missing from the northern shores of asia and america, exactly where the polar bears are waiting to go out on it to catch seals. You seriously don' t think that starving poses a serious threat to a species?

      February 15, 2011 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
  11. MikeB

    "Frozen tundra" is an oxymoron. Tundra, by definition, is frozen ground.

    February 15, 2011 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • azbearhuntr

      Actually only "permafrost tundra" is frozen all year, The tundra is a biome type not a description of the soil temperature. Much of tundra areas are not frozen year around.

      February 15, 2011 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • km

      You mean redundant, not oxymoronic.

      February 15, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • walks with stupid

      hopefully right now you're on the wikipedia page for "oxymoron", realizing what a total idiot you are.

      February 15, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jeff

    actually, like I said above, it was Torngasak this time around. Perhaps Allah will save the next youngster. How do I know this you ask? Deep, personal faith. Plus, I have a personal relationship with Torngasak. Plus, "he speaks to me" and tells me he's real.

    February 15, 2011 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  13. silvershado

    Azbearhunter and Kevin have the goods, folks. Skip the junk.

    February 15, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Julio Juan Gonzalezzzz

    I like bacon.

    February 15, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Moglar

    Blame it on BP

    February 15, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
1 2