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Rescued Zion hiker is dehydrated and malnourished but ‘in good spirits,’ friend says

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"She injured her head on a tree," Kailey Chambers said in a text exchange. "She was very disoriented as a result and thankfully ended up near a water source — a river bed. She thought her best chance of survival was to stay next to a water source."It was not clear from the text exchange if the water source was potable, but Chambers said Courtier was without food while she was lost in the park. "She was too weak and disoriented (to seek help)," she said. "She was unable to take more than a step or two without collapsing. This prevented her from being able to seek out help. She told me she was so dehydrated she couldn't open her mouth."Authorities found Courtier "in a thickly vegetated area along the Virgin River," Amanda Rowland, Zion National Park's acting chief of interpretation, told CNN in a statement."The National Park Service is delighted in being able to re-unite Ms. Courtier with her family following a successful search," Rowland's statement read.The malnourished and dehydrated 38-year-old was spending the night in a hospital near Zion, family friend Kelley Kaufman White said hours after Courtier was found Sunday. Kailey Chambers and her mother, Holly Courtier, pose at Zion National Park last month.Park visitors located Courtier on Sunday in the national park in southwestern Utah and alerted park officials, Kaufman White said. The National Park Service dispatched a rescue team after park rangers received a "credible tip" on her whereabouts, it said.Authorities found Courtier "in a thickly vegetated area along the Virgin River," Amanda Rowland, Zion National Park's acting chief of interpretation, told CNN in a statement."She is in good spirits and very thankful for everyone who searched for her, especially the people who found her today and the rangers that rescued her," Kaufman White said. Chambers saw her mom late Monday morning, and "she is getting her strength back and hydrating. She is still weak but recovering." "We are slowly introducing foods. Her health remains our top priority," the daughter said. "My mom's recovery is my top priority right now. … We will continue to focus on her health and will update everyone when possible."The California woman's relatives said they were overjoyed she'd been found safe and thanked the rangers, search teams and volunteers who lent their time and resources to find her. "This wouldn't have been possible without the network of people who came together," the statement said.Courtier was last seen October 6 exiting a shuttle in the Grotto area, which leads to several hiking trails. She is an experienced hiker, knows Zion well and is capable of surviving in the park's rugged conditions, her family has said. Kailey Chambers said she wouldn't stop looking for her mother, Holly Courtier. "This was her dream, to see national parks," Chambers said. "She lost her job as a Read More – Source

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