So anyway here's how Velvet's heroic story goes: In February of 2007, eight people and Velvet, the dog, went climbing on Mt. Hood in Oregon. Mt. Hood is the tallest mountain in Oregon, and people are all the time trying to climb it, for reasons that I don't understand because it's cold and snowy and dangerous up on a mountain! But anyway, about 10,000 people try to climb Mt. Hood every single year, and between 1 and 3 of them die.
|Mt. Hood seen from an airplane|
The three people and Velvet slid down about 500 feet into sort of a canyon, and the other five people were left up above. The five people up above were afraid to try to rescue the ones down below, so they called for help, and then they kept going down the mountain, and finally they got to the bottom.
|Satellite picture of Mt. Hood|
Then after a while, it got to be night, and it was really, really, really cold. The wind was blowing like 70 miles per hour, and the temperature was around 20, and there was snow, and it was just a yucky place to be. So the three lost climbers found a little sheltered place kind of behind a rock, and they got out their sleeping bags and a tarp, and they tried to keep from freezing to death. And one of the main reasons they didn't freeze to death was because Velvet lay on each one of them in turn, and she used her body to keep the people warm.
|Velvet and her dad, Matty|
Anyway, that is the story of how a dog named Velvet was heroic and kept three people from freezing to death or even getting frostbite. And what we can learn from this story is that if you want to stay safe and warm, you shouldn't go mountain climbing. But if you feel you must go climb a mountain, you should take a dog like Velvet along!