Hiker missing for near-month found alive with her cat

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A woman who had been missing for nearly a month has been found alive in New Mexico’s Gila National Forest.

Search crews said they found 31-year-old Margaret Page of Albuquerque on Wednesday along with her cat, who apparently never left her side.

Page was barely able to speak and had lost one third of her body weight, but was able to stay warm thanks to her thick blue sleeping bag, authorities said. She likely had been stranded in the Gila for the past three weeks, eating food she had brought with her and drinking water from a nearby creek.

Page told crews that she ran out of food about a week ago.

KRQE-TV reported that Forest Service workers spotted Page’s car by the Gila Trailhead on Feb. 10. But it wasn’t until Feb. 25 that the Forest Service ran the plates on the car and realized it belonged to Page and Albuquerque police were contacted.

State police out of Silver City said they were contacted by Page’s sister earlier this week and immediately launched a search effort in the Gila.

Her sleeping bag was spotted Wednesday about a mile up from the Railroad Canyon Trail.

Albuquerque police said they were looking into why it took two weeks to launch the search for Page.

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