Memory card survives Colorado wilderness long enough to be reunited with owner


The digital camera might just be the most protective storage container for a memory card. We’ve seen a few stories of digital cameras recovered in the wilderness that have been destroyed by the elements, but managed to keep the memory card intact after years of being lost. Equally amazing is how the images reunite with the owners, thanks to clues in the preserved photos. The most recent occurrence happened last August in Colorado, where Bruce Stover, director of the Office of Active and Inactive Mines, found a camera that had been dropped down a steep hillside. Colorado’s 9NEWS reported on the recovery.

Several pictures recovered off the memory card showed scenic views of the mountains near the town of Silverton, where the camera was found. From the date stamps, Stover could tell that the photos were taken between September 16 and 19 in 2006, which presumably meant that the camera was lost around then. Photos also showed a couple photographed in the mountains. Stover said that he could tell the camera had been gradually traveling down the slope, from the damage marks on the camera.

After 9NEWS initially reported on the found camera and published images, the original owner came forward. Aaron Johnson contacted the TV channel and said he had dropped the camera down a steep slope when hiking in the area. The station said he “was overjoyed to get it back.”

This story isn’t the first and won’t be the last. Last summer the New York Times reported on how a camera that had been lost in the forest – and submerged underwater – for three years found its way home back to New York City, thanks to a persistent art teacher and clues in the photos.