Pair of Boise families survive unplanned night in mountains

kmoeller@idahostatesman.comFebruary 17, 2014 

Two Boise men and their three children spent Saturday night in their SUV after it became stuck in a snow bank on a remote mountain road east of Arrowrock Reservoir.

Their 2003 Ford Explorer was found on Slide Gulch Road, according to a Boise County dispatcher.

At about 8 a.m. Sunday, the group trudged off in the snow for help. They walked and walked and walked.

The group was led by William Murkle, 34, and John Julian, 38.

The children with them were Megun Murkle, 10; Samantha Julian, 8; and Isaac Julian, 7.

They traversed about 19 miles to Prairie. At about 5:20 p.m., they found an occupied cabin with a land line and called their loved ones to let them know they were OK, Boise Police spokeswoman Lynn Hightower said Sunday.

They declined medical treatment, Hightower said.

Family, friends, law enforcement and the general public in four counties were on the lookout for the families. Boise police put out a press release at 2:40 p.m.

Officials said the group was supposed to be back by 5 p.m. Saturday. Their families weren’t completely sure where they went — the men mentioned both Lucky Peak Reservoir area east of Boise and CJ Strike Reservoir in Owyhee County.

Initially, police said their last known cellphone location was in the Warm Springs Road area, but later they said the last phone contact was in the Arrowrock Reservoir area.

Searchers concentrated on that area.

At about 6:30 p.m., Boise police put out the word that the group was found safe.

Katy Moeller: 377-6413

View Stranded Boise families hike to safety in a larger map

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