Two Rescued From Superstitions

By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski
The News

A 72-year-old Gold Canyon man and his nephew were rescued from the Superstition Wilderness Thursday, September 25, after losing their way during a 13-mile hike from the Peralta Trailhead.

Superstition Search and Rescue members Richard Carpenter and Bruce Horken located Guenter Cohn and Mathew Cohn, who began their hike at 8 a.m. Wednesday, September 24, on the trail west of Weavers Needle.

The two were out of water, lost, dehydrated and exhausted, said Robert Cooper of Superstition Search and Rescue. After hydrating and assessing their condition, Superstition Search and Rescue called for an air extract because the Cohns were “very weak and still five miles from completing their journey,” Cooper said.

“What they did right was they informed family of their plan and, once lost, stayed and slept on the trail,” Cooper said.

“What they did wrong was not being prepared for the extended stay. Even the best plans can go bad. They had no light source or fire-making goods. The helicopter could have found them right away in the night if they had.”

According to Cooper, the Cohns had a map, GPS, a knife and 10 liters of water before starting the hike. “With the cool mornings and afternoon hot temps they quickly ran out of water. Once they were out of water, Guenter began eating the prickly pear fruit but couldn’t get Mathew to.” Maricopa Search and Rescue also aided in the search and rescue.

The Superstition Wilderness has approximately 50 trails with many intersections and is 242 square miles.

Wilderness Hiking Tips
Make a plan and tell someone.
Never hike alone
Water – a gallon a day
Map of area
Compass or GPS
Matches/fire starter
Extra food
Extra clothing
First Aid Kit
Signaling device
Body protection items
Survival items

Superstition Search and Rescue Inspires ‘Rock the Boat’

By Julie Baker
The Art Institute of Phoenix
Advertising Major

You are at Thanksgiving dinner surrounded by loved ones and enchanted with the mouth-watering aroma of succulent turkey, sweet potatoes and warm apple pie. Your pager abruptly interrupts the evening. Immediately you begin a two-hour travel to save someone’s life.

This story is not about a superhero. This story is about regular men and women with superhero hearts.

The Superstition Search and Rescue team is a volunteer service organization affiliated with the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office in Florence, Arizona. The purpose of the non-profit group is to assist individuals who experience wilderness-related problems such as: injuries, being lost, an excess of heat or cold exposure.

Robert Cooper has been actively volunteering for 14 years. “It’s a lifestyle. You must have very understanding spouses and bosses. The majority of the people that join say it is all worth it,” shares Cooper.

The time donated is immense. Not only must they travel far to reach the victims, they must constantly attend rigorous trainings to stay in top shape and up to date. They are only reimbursed for the gas they use to commute to the victims. They are not completely funded for costs of equipment and certainly not their time.

Through the ‘Rock the Boat’ project, the proceeds made from the auction of the Chris Craft will be donated to Superstition Search and Rescue.

Host, Keith Bennet, explains, “This the foundational story of why the boat is being refurbished.”

For more information on Superstition Search and Rescue go to