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Man survives on snow in Nevada wilderness

Posted at 6:55 PM, Feb 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-14 21:55:52-05

Stranded for a week in the Nevada wilderness, an Oregon man says he survived on snow.

69-year-old Philip Besanson is now recovering at a hospital in northeast California after being found 50 miles north of Gerlach in Washoe County. Police said he was driving his pickup truck from Arizona home to Eugene, Oregon, when it broke down on State Route 34 on Feb. 5.

Besanson stayed in his truck, drinking melted snow and rationing what little food he had.

A Washoe County sheriff and lieutenant were checking road conditions when they came upon the vehicle Friday morning. They then transported Bensanson to the hospital.

“Mr. Besanson told us that he believes his life was saved by Lt. Condon and Sgt. Hippert today and I agree with him,” Washoe Sheriff Chuck Allen said in a press release. “Because of the bad road and weather conditions along SR 34 this time of year, it may have been several more weeks before anyone else traveled up that particular stretch of highway and located this gentleman.”