Trail Life Troop saves trapped woman in cliffside rescue

Trail Life USA equips and empowers boys to be prepared and take charge in real-world challenges

September 12, 2022

GREENVILLE, S.C.A recent study revealed that 70% of youth rate their ability to cope with challenges as medium to very low, with only 36% reporting that they feel confident when they work with others of their own age. This lack of self-esteem paints a grim picture for the future of America. If tomorrow’s leaders, particularly the boys, don’t know how to work together and conquer challenges, what can they hope to accomplish in real-world scenarios?

Trail Life ( has been equipping boys for a bright future for nearly a decade. The largest Christ-centered, boy-focused scout-type organization in the country, Trail Life uses a tried-and-true Proven Process designed to help boys succeed and grow. Trail Life is dedicated to guiding generations of courageous young men to honor God, lead with integrity, serve others, and experience outdoor adventure.

One Trail Life Troop recently had an opportunity to prove their mettle in the wilderness by saving the life of a trapped woman. As Troop TX-1333 prepared to hike Enchanted Rock, the largest pink granite monadnock in the United States, the boys in the Troop brought extra supplies such as electrolyte tablets and water to fight the sweltering 98-degree heat. However, they soon learned that those additional supplies would serve someone else in need.

As the Troop navigated the caves surrounding the area in their descent, they heard a cry from a very distressed elderly woman. Troop spokesperson Blake Roff said,“A woman below had traveled down through the adjacent cave and had exited, but instead of ascending back to the top, she began to descend the perilously steep portion of the mountain! The elderly woman had been out of touch with her friend for about an hour, who was calling out for help.

“Desiring to help the woman while keeping the boys from the Troop safe, two dads began scouting the section of rock below the cave. They were able to locate the woman  about 40 yards below the Troop. It was then they discovered she had been accompanied by her 11-year-old daughter. The two of them were trapped on some rocks that formed a slightly level ledge that jutted out from the steep decline, approximately 1,000 feet above the base of the summit. The woman was in a perilous situation; it was clear she was experiencing heat exhaustion and the effects of severe dehydration. She was disoriented, had cuts on her legs, and was immobile. She also was fully exposed to the blazing sun on the ledge on which she’d managed to position herself. She’d been throwing up shortly before we arrived and was unable to speak.”

The Troop leapt into action to help the trapped woman. “Finding a safe route down, we were able to retrieve additional water and rehydration salts and several Trailmen were able to assist in helping move the mother and daughter a short distance to a slightly shaded area,” Roff commented. “After a few moments of surveying for a route to move them away from the ledge, the Troop realized that given the woman’s condition, there was no safe way for us to extract her on our own. We called the State Park rangers for assistance and relayed our location by description and by using GPS coordinates.

“After 30 long minutes, EMS showed up and used a medical basket to extract her from her precarious location. After being with this woman and assisting her for three hours, we were relieved and grateful to see her make it safely to the top and then down the mountain in the basket without any further complications.

“Having the proper essentials before heading into the backcountry made all the difference that day. I thank God that we were prepared, that we were able to find this woman, and that we had the training necessary to render assistance before she passed out and her situation worsened. This was a great learning experience for the Trailmen on being prepared for the elements, and on how vital our roles can be in helping others and in making a positive difference when we are prepared.”

Through it’s unique Proven Process, Trail Life equips boys to conquer challenges together as a team — in this case, to save a life! By encouraging boys to rise to the challenge, Trail Life leaders are preparing the next generation for the trials and challenges ahead.

For more about Troop TX-1333’s harrowing rescue, see Trail Life’s blog.

Trail Life’s unique approach is garnering attention from families across the nation. Trail Life has grown by over 12,000 new Troop members in 2022 alone. In just the last month, over 500 individuals have reached out for information on starting a Trail Life Troop, and more than 30 new Troops have been chartered in the past 30 days. With Trail Life’s success in growing to over 40,000 members in under ten years, boys and men are building meaningful relationships, growing in character, developing in leadership, and just having fun in the great outdoors.

Trail Life USA has received praise from some of the top Christian voices today, including Focus on the Family, Franklin Graham, James Dobson, Mike Huckabee, Alex and Stephen Kendrick, Family Life, Promise Keepers, the American Family Association, and many others. 

Trail Life USA is the premier national character development organization for young men, producing godly and responsible husbands, fathers, and citizens. Trail Life’s mission is to guide generations of courageous young men to honor God, lead with integrity, serve others, and experience outdoor adventure. Troops exist in all 50 states and are growing as Trail Life USA expands around the country. Find a Troop today, or Start a Troop in your community. Find out more at  

Trail Life USA’s K-12 program centers on outdoor experiences that build a young man’s skills. A robust awards program motivates young men to grow on a personal level to become role models and leaders among their peers. Living the Trail Life USA is a journey established on timeless values derived from the Bible.    

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