85-year-old Colo. woman, cat rescued after being stranded in car for 5 days

Ruby Stein, 85, and her cat, Nikki, were stranded in her car for four days and five nights.

CBS Denver

DENVER -- An 85-year-old Colorado woman and her cat have been rescued after spending four nights and five days stranded in her vehicle in the Eagle County wilderness after she took a wrong turn. 

A wrong turn left her stranded in the middle of nowhere -- and then her car battery died and her phone was useless in the wilderness at 10,000 feet, CBS Denver reports

She said she used old clothes in the back of the car to fill gaps in the windows. She put an old rug over her legs to keep them warm.

For a few brief moments there was hope during the long days and nights.

“I saw a helicopter go over … and I grabbed her (her cat) and hugged her and said, ‘Nikki, they are here to get us.’ But it went on.”

Finally, by pure chance, hikers Dan Higbee and Katie Preston discovered her car.


Two hikers noticed Ruby Stein by chance.

Dan Higbee via CBS Denver

“This guy walked up to my car door and said, ‘Are you okay?’ And I said, ‘Well, I’ve been here since Tuesday and this is Saturday.’”

After surviving on a sweet roll, a Rice Crispy treat and snow water, she and Nikki were headed home.  

Authorities had issued a statewide bulletin urging residents to be on the lookout for Stein after her family members reported she never made it home.

Stein’s Nissan Sentra was eventually spotted Saturday by a couple driving along the dirt road who helped get her home.