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Introduction and History
|I had just finished recording the names in the aluminium
battery box and was just getting out my satellite phone to call my wife
and reassure her that my trip had not been a failure after all, when I
heard a helicopter approaching. It was moving slowly and then seemed
to hover to the east of me, approximately where I had set up my tent.
Then it began moving west towards me until I had my first view of it, a
Jet Ranger. I was standing at the edge of the river and it hovered
in front of me. I felt sure it was looking for me, but why?
It then slowly descended down to the level of the river until it seemed to be just touching the boulders out in the middle of river. With the engine and rotor still racing, a door opened and someone looked down. The door closed and the helicopter rose up. I thought it was going to leave without me being able to find out why it had come in the first place. But no, it went overhead and then started descending again, behind where I was standing.
I walked away from the river to a clearing behind me and could see that it was descending over an open area in the woods, a hundred or so feet away. It was swampy and, as the helicopter got close to the ground, the downwash from the rotor began to churn the water lying in shallow pools. Again the door opened and someone looked down. Then, the helicopter again rose up. Thatís it, I thought, it will be gone now without me finding out what this has been all about.
I was wrong. The helicopter again flew over me and began to descend
once more over the river in front of me. This time it was oriented
differently as it neared the boulders. Finally, it seemed to be in
contact with the boulders, engine and rotor still at full speed.
The door opened and the same person looked down and then closed the door.
I held my breath.