Woman Treed by Wolves Waits for Authorities to Allow Rescue

Woman Treed by Wolves Waits for Authorities to Allow Rescue
Woman Treed by Wolves Waits for Authorities to Allow Rescue

Arizona -(Ammoland.com)- On 12 July, 2018, a salmon researcher was treed by a pack of wolves in a Washington state wilderness area. She tried pepper spray and yelling, but the pack surrounded her and she climbed a tree. She later climbed down, only to find the wolves still there. She scrambled back up the tree and called for rescue, about 12:30 p.m. From capitalpress.com:

Washington wildlife managers initially opposed sending a helicopter or a search-and-rescue team to save a woman treed by wolves in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, according to recordings and summaries of emergency calls obtained Tuesday.

The Department of Natural Resources pushed back and prepared to dispatch an air crew that eventually executed a swift rescue. Notes from a call between DNR dispatcher Jill Jones and a wildlife officer summarized WDFW’s position, and her position, shortly before the helicopter launched.

“No helicopter. Federally listed species. 3 WDFW personnel saying so,” according to DNR’s call log.

“We are more concerned for her life than the listed animal,” Jones told the officer. “He indicated that she is safe up in the tree. … I told him that we do not know how safe she is. I don’t know how stout the tree is, and if the limbs will continue to hold her or how long she can hold on.”

A helicopter crew, in aircraft N338WN, finally rescued the woman later in the day. The crew consisted of four men, who from all reports, did an excellent job. The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Helicopter members were Devin Gooch (pilot), Jared Hess (crew), Mathew Harris (crew) and Daryl Schie (helicopter manager). It took about 45 minutes to get permission for the helicopter crew to take off, then another 14 minutes for the helicopter to arrive. I have not found the arrival time of the helicopter on site in any media. From seattletimes.com:

The research student was at a Okanogan County campground when she came across a wolf, and tried to use pepper spray on it. But another wolf appeared and then she climbed a tree.


“The information we received was that she was 30 feet up a tree with a pack of wolves surrounding it,” Rogers said in a news release.

The sheriff said it would’ve taken his deputies about two hours to hike to her location, but the state Department of Natural Resources volunteered a helicopter that could be there in 14 minutes.

Rogers said when the helicopter arrived, the pilot told dispatch, “We’ve got wolves on the ground.”

The pilot landed and the wolves scattered. The woman climbed aboard safely.

Later reports show the woman to be a seasonal employee engaged in salmon research. She was not a student. She was not at the Okonagan County campground, but miles away from it. The helicopter likely arrived about an hour after the researcher called for help. The Capital Press report records about 45 minutes of debate preceded sending the helicopter.

Researchers have already created an excuse for the aggressive wolf behavior. They say the area the woman was in is a “rendevous site”; therefore the wolf behavior was “defensive” not aggressive. From miltribune.com:

They determined that where the researcher was treed was a “rendezvous” site, and the wolves were likely acting defensively to protect offspring or food sources.

It is easy to create excuses for aggressive wolves. Anyone can do it.

The authorities have decided to allow these aggressive wolves to continue without interference. If traveling in this area, it might be wise to take a defensive firearm and plenty of ammunition. Wolf packs need large territories to produce enough food for wolves to survive. Wolves can easily travel 30 miles a day.

Wolf defenders work hard to claim that any aggressive wolf behavior is defensive.  How is a person in the woods to know if the wolves are attacking defensively or aggressively? You cannot.

What difference should it make in your response? None.

If you are being attacked, you need to defend yourself. The woman researcher was lucky. She was able to secure refuge and contact rescuers who were willing and able to come to her aid.

When European immigrants first came to North America, they assumed that wolves were dangerous. All of their experience in Europe showed wolves to be dangerous. Wolves in North America are the same animals as wolves in Europe.

The mythology of the harmless wolf was created out of the success of the developing North American civilization. They were successful at protecting themselves and their animal resources from wolves. The European immigrants brought technology that was effective in keeping wolf populations on the defensive, afraid of contact with man. When wolves came in conflict with men who had access to firearms, steel traps, and poison, wolves learned to fear men or die.

The best way to keep wolves harmless is to keep them in fear of man. This pack in Washington state has successfully treed a woman, without any loss. They have learned from the experience. They are likely to treat the next human more aggressively.

Wolf attacks are rare. Humans need to work at keeping them that way.

Wolves are powerful and effective predators that work in coordination with each other. Unarmed humans are no match against a wolf pack that views them as prey.

©2018 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

Link to Gun Watch

About Dean Weingarten:Dean Weingarten

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

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VT Patriot

An incredible compendium of stupidity squared. First, the lady had NO business being where she was alone and unarmed. Second, the rescue crew should have been in the chopper and on their way before the last sentence was issued. The beauracracy of some snowflake sitting at his/her desk deciding whether the lady should be saved or let the wolves prepare for dinner is beyond stupid. Imagine if the person at risk had been the snowflakes sister. Would they have hoped for the dinner alternative, or would they have been screaming for help for ‘my little sister’? In WA, the answer… Read more »


I have met bears on mountain trails, I have interacted with a black bear with cubs on 30 or 40 occasions, I have sat on the snowy ground 20 feet from a wolf and talked to him for 15 minutes while he sat facing me, I have “rescued” idiotic tourists trying to feed a bull Elk and have had numerous other wild animal encounters – I have never, at any time, felt threatened in any way. And being from Canada I almost never carried. I don’t know nor do I judge this woman but more often than not the fear… Read more »

Cynthia Campbell

Liberal idiots should have to rescue themselves.


That policy would certainly reduce the numbers of liberal idiots in a fairly short time.


Yes, let them have their Darwin Award.


yes you can interact with the critters until you meet one that puts you on the menu. The trouble with that is you don’t know which one is gonna eat you until it happens. I live in the interior of Northern British Columbia Canada and I would no sooner go into the bush unarmed than I wold walk naked in downtown Vancouver. I too have encountered Bears face to face.l I have been no more than 4 feet from a full grown black bear. he was not hungry, old, sick, or pissed off. He was not threatening in any way.… Read more »


my pdw while hiking is a KSG. I’ll let you guess the ammo.


Nobody is obligated to save or protect you from harm. your safety and security is your obligation. not that of state or local governments. SCOTUS Deshaney vs Winnebago county dept of social services.


I worked for the Forest Service for 30 years in Oregon and Montana. Rob is correct in saying Gov. employees are prohibited from carrying a firearm while on the clock. Law enforcement officers of course are armed. Packers carried a pistol in case they had to put down a horse or mule. Employees in Alaska do carry a rifle or shotgun for defense against grizzlies mostly. With the increase in the wolf population in the northwest, they may have to rethink that regulation. You never hear about wolf attacks on people. Makes you wonder if there are more of them… Read more »


Really? Treed by a Muse? Damner…hate it when that happens. How many were there, nine?

Mike R

LOL nice reference.

Sasha L Prokopchuk

Omg I may love you

Wild Bill

@Mick, Yes, all nine at Mt. Olympus state park.


If 9 Muses chased me up a tree I don’t know if I would run, or just savor the moment.

Wild Bill

@Mick, Muses promise, but never deliver … so the legend … or track record go!


At my age, I’d just take one MUSE! Or maybe settle for an AMAZON! Just my luck, hildabeast would show up, of course she would be wolf bait!


Must have been a lesbian MUSE! How a-MUSE-ing!


If the human being is alone there will be NO ONE report the attack and little to no evidence left after a successful attack.


Looks like I will be carrying extra magazine next time I go in deep. I have no qualms about dropping a few wolves to teach The rest of the pack to beware of man


Even if you have a firearm it is no guarantee you will survive a hungry wolf pack bent on you for lunch. There was an incident here in B.C. Canada a few years back. Remains of a hunter were found with 3 dead wolves scattered around his remains and a broken automatic rifle. The forensic said he emptied his rifle and then used it as a club. He was unsuccessful and did not survive. Here in Canada we have a 5 round limit in our detachable magazines. This law got this hunter killed.


Sounds like, with a wolf pack, the 21-foot rule is a bit short-sighted. Of course, if you’re limited to just one magazine, then you’d just have to wait for surviving members of the pack to get to you, after dispatching the first five. Sword maybe? But I’ll venture a WAG that’s illegal too, in the naively benighted Peoples Republic of Canada?


And you lot up north are generally prohibited the use of sidearms, the REAL solution.

Seems “the law” is quite effective at limiting people’s options and putting us at much higher risk.

stoopud gummit ennyway

Scotty Gunn

Over the years I have carried various guns in the woods. I finally had to boil it down to one medium power for humans and critters. We do not have grizzlies where I go, just to emphasize that. I settled on a Glock 20, the ten mm high cap. I put a fully supported match barrel in it and i hand load to the old Norma specs (screaming). Dead accurate up to 100 yards. Easy to carry, and large capacity.


If you go into the woods you must be prepared to defend yourself. In this case you are talking about the liberal state of Washington. As liberals they believe animals come first regardless of the outcome UNLESS the person requesting help is a liberal politician then the person comes first. It sounds like the WDFW is actually run by former politicians from King County (Seattle) as those people (idiots) are known for questionable thinking.

Easy Day

Having a search & rescue (SAR) helicopter and crew sitting at an airport DOING NOTHING is an absolute waste of money. As a retired SAR helicopter pilot, I can say emphatically that my crew and I never once considered the intelligence, political leanings nor personal philosophies of the people we rescued. If someone was in trouble, WE LAUNCHED! The ignorance and stupidity exhibited by some of the authorities mentioned in this article, as well as some of the commenters here, is almost beyond belief. Almost. Sometimes, probably more often than not, people get themselves into trouble due to their own… Read more »

R Swinney

glad your retired. don’t need your type in service anymore. so many talking out their hats. if you dont know shut up. Okanogan county is the largest county in Washington state. There are fewer than 50,000 people living here with large tracts of forest and primative forest area. this area is visited by more people then live here. Thanks for all the unknowing flapping you gums like you know something. Our search and rescue abilities are equal to any, they train and work to their fullest. Dont need second hand second guessing from the peanut gallery. Our Sheriff Frank Rogers… Read more »


I believe Skamania COUnty is larger, and less populated, than Okanogan.

Also, It does not appear your sheriff was involved in this. Seems it was a government thing start to fniishSeems State government, WA DNR or DFW.

And YES< your slam on the DNR dweebs from Olympia is far too kind. I have known some of them, and watched their antics with amazement for years. And to think our tax dollars feed those incompetents?

Easy Day

Really dude? What type is that? The type that says “who gives a crap how or why they’re in trouble, let’s GO!” or do you prefer the type that says “screw ‘em – too stupid leave their gun at home, too stupid to save,”?? I’m not really sure what your rant is about, because I didn’t say anything negative about the search and rescue team. As a matter of fact, I know EXACTLY what it feels like to be ready to launch a rescue attempt and be delayed by indecision at a “higher” level, because I have been there. But… Read more »

Wild Bill

@Easy, I would like to hear more about that ” “rescuees” get a bill for services rendered.” part, if it would not be too much trouble.


There are many states that will bill “idiots” that got themselves into their predicament through their own negligence – AS IT SHOULD BE! If you go mountain climbing when a snow storm is coming and then get trapped on the mountain, YOU’RE A FUKING IDIOT AND SHOULD PAY FOR your OWN RESCUE! In the case of this researcher, she just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, and thanks to the government agency that insists on relocating and spreading wolves all over N. America again!

Easy Day

@ WB, thanks for asking. The first time I saw this was in the mid-nineties. We launched to find a scuba diver that had been reported missing from his group while diving a wreck about 10 miles offshore. After about 2 hours, we found him almost 8 miles from his last known position. Picked him up and took him to a nearby hospital. Turns out the same guy had been rescued by the Coast Guard the previous year under similar circumstances. Since our unit was routinely reimbursed by the Coast Guard for off-shore SAR events, we found out that they… Read more »


This is just a dumb human issue. Yes sending a helicopter may have been justified in this case, but it’s completely understandable that the authorities hesitated in doing so. More often a call like that would be placed by someone with an irrational fear of dogs/wolves, under little or no threat of harm. When you’re suggesting a response involving the use of an aircraft likely leased at $500-$1000 per flight hr, burning jet fuel at $30-60(?) per gallon minimum, and paying a 4 man crew whatever their rate is to make up the annual average salary over $100k. Don’t go… Read more »


I’ll just get you are a Democrat!


relatives of the attacking creatures say they were depressed and had other mental problems before the alleged assault


The Council on American Wolverine Relations (CAWR) complained of discrimination, alleging that (a) some of their members were illegally monitored under the Open Forest initiative (a ground-based extension of the Open Skies anti-terrorist program) and (b) they had been refused service at an outdoor restaurant, enhancing the “food desert” conditions in their community.


correction..Wolf, not wolverine


I think we need to counsel that pack of wolves, maybe spend more tax payer money to make them happy. Oh I have an idea how about some arial machine gunning target practice on all of them.

Matt in Oklahoma

They must have quit raising men up there because that’s not even an issue or a question. It’s worth any disciplinary action.
So That Others May Live

R Swinney

hey Matt come on up to the Pasayten wilderness. I think a flat lander like youself might learn something, if your MAN enough.


Perhaps those WDFW personnel could benefit from an unguarded walk through the area where the researcher was treed?


‘Wolves’…smoke-em if ya got-em. Smoke a pack a day!

Sal Chichon

From the woman who got treed, to the idiots placing animal life above human life environmentalist libtards are goddamned worthless. Maybe next time little miss cupcake will buy, learn how to use, and pack a gun instead of taking the, “squirrel challenge,” when she’s out in the forrest.

Wild Bill

@Sal C, “Cupcake” that is ironic and funny. She would have been desert, alright.


She shouldn’t have ventured into the woods when “she” was in heat! Wolves are like sharks, they can smell blood for MILES!

Douglas Kuykendall

Owoooooooo! Who’s that I see walkin’ in these woods? Why, it’s Little Red Riding Hood Hey there Little Red Riding Hood You sure are looking good You’re everything a big bad wolf could want Listen to me Little Red Riding Hood I don’t think little big girls should Go walking in these spooky old woods alone Owoooooooo! What big eyes you have The kind of eyes that drive wolves mad So just to see that you don’t get chased I think I ought to walk with you for a ways What full lips you have They’re sure to lure someone… Read more »


DK you are deadly. Sam the Sham & the P’s, still great.

Don Razskazoff

Really?……there’s a 45 minute debate about whether to launch a rescue for your employee …..OR NOT?? Somebody’s head better be on the line about this one. Where’s “Mick Dodge” when you need him?

Calvin Don Blumhorst

Sounds like a worthwhile debate/conversation to have, whether or not to spend thousands of tax dollars to rescue a feckless idiot who’s too damned lazy or ignorant or stupid to provide for her own easily arranged well-being (i.e., GPS, compass, firearm, etc). I still don’t understand how they came to the conclusion to dispatch a four person helicopter crew rather than send in one person on a “two hour” hike to escort the worthless, entitled POS back to the urban jungle where she probably felt safer. For any moderately competent outdoor person, it would have been a pleasant nature walk… Read more »


I’m not sure how one person, in one post, can make an idiot of himself so many times but you did. Congrats, you get the award………for something.

Calvin Don Blumhorst

Instead of ad hominem invective and statements of your fragile feelings, do you have any REAL facts to support your opinions or counter my points about possible inappropriate misuse of tax dollars and limited public resources?


Sure: 1. You don’t know her so you’re statements regarding her being “lazy, ignorant or stupid” are without merit and, unless you were there and can provide proof of having personal knowledge of her character all it does is show your own lack of credibility. 2. When there is the possibility of a human life endangered you don’t send someone for a “pleasant two hour nature walk” to rescue them. Again, unless you were there and can provide us all with facts that contradict the few facts we were provided with your comments are those of someone who has a… Read more »

Calvin Don Blumhorst

1. To travel unarmed into the habitat of a known pack of apex predators IS lazy, ignorant or stupid. It’s not my job to provide “proof” that her seemingly lazy, stupid or ignorant actions were not. 2., 3. & 4. That’s the same kind of “thinking” that results in FD ladder trucks setting at the scene of fender benders. Government resource allocation is a zero sum equation and public resources are NOT unlimited, nor can they be two places at once. Taxpayers, via the largesse of their elected representatives, pay many bureaucrats more than their private sector equivalents; unfortunately, we… Read more »


I’ll just get you are a Democrat!


Hey “b” , been a total idiotic moron long? “Firing into the dirt” ???? Really I suggest you go out in the woods and prove this idiocy, OH, and try it with a bear too. You’ve “raised two wolves??? WHY ??
You DO NOT need “drum mag equipped firearm” , That”s another spew that demonstrates your stupidity and ignorance about firearms and about wolves and other wild animals.
Now BACK to your safe space and be sure to flush twice !!

Wild Bill

@CDB, As to “2., 3.&4” you opened the door with “… or counter my points about possible inappropriate misuse of tax dollars and limited public resources?”. So … objection overruled.


As to your point number one.. STUPID gvernment regulations prohibit employees of those wildlife, environment, outdoor resources, such as the one involved in this account, from carrying defensive wepons. Which is almost comical, because each of those departments have agency police who do law enforcement.. and they ARE armed, at taxpayer expense. But the fieldworkers, researchers, etc, can NOT go about their business armed. Personally, I see the risk of injury/death from wildlife far out in the wilderness as far higher than the risk of death/injury from a fisherman who forgot his license, or took one too many salmon, or… Read more »


This happened in the area encompassing three or four states where the Lesser Grey WOlf was listed as “endangered” and thus protected. Government dweebs refused to let Darwin be right on his second premise (the workins of the process of natural selection) and decided ti “import” more wolves to “restore” the declining population. Problem is, the idiotic gummit hooh hahs decided to import a dDIFERENT wolf… the GREATER grey, from upper Michigan (Mackinac, I believe?). That wolf looks similar in photograhps, but is larger, more aggressive, more prolific, higher rate of metabolism, thus needs to eat more, and claim larger… Read more »


Tionico, well said. I was wondering when someone would bring up the lies and scam that the government has perpetrated with these wolves.


I’d say we’re at a fork in the road and taken different directions. Have a nice day.


Calvin = Dumb. That’s all that needs sayin’


If she hadn’t had phone reception, would we have found her skeleton hanging from a tree branch or carried off by the wolves. I spent my spare time during my childhood in the forest fog of the Pacific Northwest. I spent time working on Search and Rescue teams. It is a dangerous place and if a person is not equipped or does not know what they are doing, a fun experience in nature can turn deadly in an instant. The forests in America are not Disneyland. The wolves are not humans in fur suits talking about blowing your straw house… Read more »


Who goes into the woods unarmed?!? What a waste of resources just for a presumed stupid anti-gun tree hugging liberal. Leave her to rot. Wolf defenders, pffft. I just have to walk away shaking my head at this load.

John Dunlap

You’d like to know who? Visit the REI store nearest you. Look around a bit, and discreetly observe the customers. Avoid expressing any opinions, but mention some concern about wildlife attacks, and ask a few questions about how to deal with bears, wolves, etc.. You will be horrified at just how ignorant most liberal environmentalist types are of the wilderness they blithely hike and bike through. I would swear that some I’ve met believe the animals were all supplied by Disney.


This short video does a better job explaining what you’ll find at REI than anything else I could say.
In my estimation, Walt Disney has contributed to more human death by wildlife than any government regulation ever written.


One of the best movies is titled, “Grizzly Man”. Grizzly Man is a 2005 American documentary film by German director Werner Herzog. It is about the life and death of bear enthusiast Timothy Treadwell and his decline into insanity. He actually believed he was saving grizzlies from hunters and others in Alaska. His and his girlfriend’s death by bear maul was captured audibly on a video camera. The lens cap covered the lens so there was no filming. It was written up in the magazine, “Outdoors” or “Backpacker” – don’t remember which one. I remember reading about it and shocked… Read more »


Undoubtedly far more people enjoy the woods than those who go into the woods armed. I spent a career working in MT and WY largest wilderness areas most of the time ‘unarmed’, i.e. without a firearm. I did have other resources to rely on such as horses and mules, my dogs, and pepper spray, radio, but mostly education and my mind. When I did carry a firearm it was with the justification of putting down injured stock. I am old and retired, but I continue to enjoy my time in the mountains with and without a firearm. Frankly in most… Read more »


You are likely right. Federal Civilian Employees (USGS etc.) are not allowed to carry firearms at work, in Federal Facilities or Federal Vehicles. This would likely be most or ALL field researchers. It’s still in the Code of Federal Regulations. This, however, does not apply to licensed Federal Officers who are not doing research.


Field crews in parts of Alaska are allowed, and perhaps required to carry a firearm. I believe it is either a 300 or 338 Win Mag. In my efforts as a FS Wilderness Manager and Outfitter Guide Administrator, as well as a former trail crew foremen, I gathered the information including the program Alaska uses to certify their field arms bearer. However, since someone hasn’t been recently killed the efforts to be proactive with a training and certification program was not given any priority on the north western WY forest where I was working. So, it will be up to… Read more »


In certain parts of Alaska field crews are allowed, or perhaps required, to carry a firearm. Usually a 300 or 338 Win Mag. As a FS wilderness manager/outfitter guide administrator and former trail crew foreman I made an effort to spur the FS to be proactive and develop such a program where appropriate. This included gathering the information from Alaska, working with local FS LEOs, and working with the Nine Mile Training Center to affer a course for certification. Since someone hasn’t been recently killed there was not a lot of interest from the powers that be. However, I remain… Read more »


Rob, I agree. I rarely carried in the field.


Well aren’t you so brave, yes if had dog I would not pack a gun but not everyone wants to travel with their dog on scouting hikes. So I pack because I can’t talk to the animals like you Dr dolittle. But still I’m not trusting my life with a dog. I use more I my brain and pack

Wild Bill

@Erik, Yes, the real Mother Nature is a mean and tricky bitch, and once again she has been thwarted to the detriment of the gene pool. For what she cost the taxpayer, she could have bought ten guns. But you can’t let your subordinates get killed without sending help.