MORGANTON, NC (AP) – A group of mountain bikers on a trail in North Carolina saw a dog trapped 30 feet deep in a sinkhole – and it took a salty snack and a pair of leashes to get him to safety.
The group was driving the Sinkhole Trail in Pisgah National Forest, about 50 miles south of Asheville on Sunday, when they encountered the dog, who had apparently been trapped in the hole for several days, according to Burke County Search And Rescue.
The bikers called for help and led rescuers more than a mile to the stranded animal, where they rappelled down the sinkhole, lured the starving dog with a beef jerky, and brought him to safety using a harness, the rescue teamsaid.
The dog was not injured, but was starved and dehydrated, rescuers said.
He was brought to Burke County Animal Services for an investigation and was named ‘Sinker’. Officials said he did not have a collar or microchip, and if the owners are not found, he could be put up for adoption.
The 11-kilometer trail is named after the large sinkhole along the ridge.