A new National Park Service report shows that there were 575,451 visitors to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in 2013, spending more than $23 million in communities near the park. The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis indicates that those dollars supported 306 jobs in the area.
One of the most recent group of visitors to the National Lakeshore had quite the experience last Thursday. Three divers from the Fox Valley Scuba Club out of Appleton, Wisconsin were underwater conducting business as usual when they heard a cry for help.
Fortunately for us, a cinematographer from Crimson Creative Group happened to have his camera on him to film the event.
“We were out there looking for the wreck of the Superior. We found a couple boilers on it, but it’s all buried in the sand. We were just there looking for a shipwreck. ” said Jeremy Saunders, a diver in the Fox Valley Scuba Club. “At the end of the video, you see the group of people in the pontoon boat. They motioned over that there was something up on shore that they wanted us to come and help with. It was initially to the west of Spray Falls and they had gotten up on shore but couldn’t corner it. It swam around the falls to the other side, where you saw us pick it up in the video. Around where I live, I live in a very rural area, I’ve seen small deer before. I never actually picked one up before though. It was pretty tired. It still had some fight left to it. As you can see, it tried to kick out of the blanket when we had it wrapped up heading to the boat. But, it was pretty tired and exhausted from its fall over the cliff or the falls, and the swim around.”
After the rescue, Jeremy and his girlfriend Melissa handed the injured fawn off to the group on the pontoon boat who initially alerted them to the situation. The group says they continued the bucket brigade effort, putting the baby deer in the hands of a DNR Conservation Officer.
Unfortunately, the fawn’s badly broken leg was beyond saving, forcing the CO to put it down. But, it’s nice to know there’s people out there like Jeremy Saunders and Melissa Bennett and Steve Wagner who will try to help those in need at the drop of a hat.