Bear Grylls' weekly reminder that man can survive wild helped a 9-year-old viewer do just that.
A 9-year-old Utah boy survived an 18-hour wilderness ordeal by using tips he learned from watching "Man vs. Wild."
Grayson Wynne got separated from his family in the Ashley National Forest, but survived by building a shelter and leaving a trail for rescuers, skills he says he learned from Bear Grylls, according to the Associated Press. Wynne said he watches Grylls' show, in which the former British special forces soldier battles the elements in all sorts of inhospitable locales, with his father and brother every week.
Dad Kynan Wynne says it's the show's message that gave his boy the ability to make it through the ordeal.
"The thing that he recognized from the show, regardless of the circumstances you're in, you are capable of surviving," the proud father said.
Grayson knew he'd need to leave signs of his presence, so he tore up his raincoat and tied pieces of the yellow material to trees.
"I don't know how many times I tore the thing, but quite a lot," he said.
When nightfall came and help had not arrived, he set up a shelter beneath a fallen tree where he stayed until morning.
The following day he set out along the bank of a creek, figuring it would lead him to civilization. But rescue came sooner than he expected, as searchers on horseback spotted the boy as he tried to flag down a helicopter with the last scrap of his torn raincoat. Ironically, it was clues the boy unintentionally left, including his backpack and a granola bar wrapper, that helped searchers find him.
The soon-to-be 4th grader greeted his dad with a "Happy Father's Day" when they were reunited on Sunday.
The Daggett County sheriff's office said the rescue success couldn't have happened without the searchers, the volunteers and Grayson's common sense.