Harley the dog was found waiting in a truck Thursday morning, after his owner got lost when his pickup got stuck in mud.
Brandon Garcia, 34, of Kennewick, took Harley and went to the Juniper Dunes, east of Eltopia along Pasco-Kahlotus Road, to camp and ride a motorcycle on Saturday, according to Franklin County Undersheriff Dan McCary.
On Monday, he became stuck in mud while heading home. The truck’s four-wheel drive wasn’t working.
Garcia spent the day unsuccessfully trying to dig it out. Police say he decided to use his motorcycle to find a way he could drive out of the area in two-wheel drive.
“Thinking he would not be gone long, he left his coat and dog in his truck and began riding in the dark. He became disoriented and could not relocate his truck,” the sheriff’s office said.
Garcia told deputies he kept falling over and got tired of lifting the 250-pound motorcycle. Later, the bike stopped running and he couldn’t start it.
He was walking in snow and rain and he wanted to sleep under a tree, but thought it could be fatal, he told police. He kept walking for about 10 miles until he reached Peterson Road on Tuesday morning. A passing driver stopped and took him to a hospital, where he was diagnosed with hypothermia.
The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office was called to help find Garcia’s truck and Harley.
On Wednesday, farmer Dave Machugh volunteered to help search using his helicopter. He found the pickup at 10 a.m. Thursday. Garcia and his fiancée, Annie Gonzalez, were reunited with Harley.
“They are home and they are safe,” Gonzalez said. “I was extremely happy they are both home and safe … There are no words to express how grateful I am to everyone.”