Nante Niemi missing Wisconsin 8 year old boy found in Porcupine Mountains after using smarts to survive the rough terrain and frigid weather.
Wit and smarts goes along a way when your life depends on it. Even more so when you are only an eight year old boy lost in the wilderness…
An 8-year-old boy survived two days in the remote frigid Michigan wilderness by eating snow and hiding beneath a log after losing contact with his family during a weekend camping excursion.
Nante Niemi of Wisconsin was found at 1:30 p.m. Monday roughly two miles from the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park campground — where he had been staying with his family, Michigan State Police said.
How does one survive the wilderness?
The second grader — wearing only a sweatshirt and sweatpants — disappeared 48 hours earlier when he wandered from the Wakefield campsite to gather firewood for his family.
The lost boy walked an entire trail until he was led to a dead end.
Rather than continue strolling and risk becoming further stranded through the unmarked 60,000-acre forest — described by officials as a ‘very remote’ park — the boy hunkered down and found shelter beneath a log.
Police said Nante used ‘branches and leaves for warmth and also blanketed the log he was under. He didn’t have any food but ate clean snow for hydration.’
News Release – Update: Missing Boy Found Safe and Reunited with Familyhttps://t.co/xv4XFbL4Kk pic.twitter.com/PhxcCfCVdt
— MSP Eighth District (@MSPEighthDist) May 8, 2023
The boy endured temperatures that dropped to the 40s both nights.
More than 150 people from various law enforcement groups, including nine K9s, joined the search on foot, in the air and on water for the missing boy.
The parties covered a roughly 40 square mile area.
Rescue officials told of the boy at one point noticing a helicopter buzzing overhead, with Niemi attempting to signal to it. Unfortunately the pilot appeared not to see him. Nevertheless the boy stood his ground and persisted.
Officials said Niemi avoided drinking the water in the forest, fearing getting sick. However, the boy ‘ate’ a few handfuls of snow – his only sustenance over the two-day period.
When Nante was finally found, first responders offered to carry the young boy back to his family, only for the 8 year old to insist on finishing his journey on foot.
‘They offered to carry him out today, but he told the guys who found him that he wanted to walk!’ Michigan police said.
Nante has since been reunited with his family and is in good health, according to officials.