California trail: American hikers helped by Canadian strangers

A couple of American hikers want to thank two Good Samaritans from Vancouver who came to their rescue while trekking in California.

The hikers were on a trail near Palm Desert when they realized the hike was a little more than they expected. Two strangers approached and offered help, and although the walkers thanked them at the time, they contacted CTV News to reiterate their appreciation.

What happened, according to Tennessee native Raymond Troy Tate, is that he and his brother-in-law had decided to follow a trail called Bump and Grind.

Tate said he was quite conditioned for this type of exercise because he walks daily in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. He said the terrain is different, but he felt he was prepared.

His brother-in-law is also fairly active, he said, taking part in boot camp workouts and daily walks in Chattanooga, Tennessee, but the walk turned out to be more challenging than either of them expected.

“We had made a few rest stops on some of the steeper sections to allow for some recovery,” Tate said Tuesday.

It was during these stops that the couple met a couple from Vancouver and had a brief chat.

“We talked about where we came from and what our activities were during this planned vacation,” Tate recalls.

“We exchanged pleasantries and wished each other a good rest of the day and safe walking.”

The pair walked forward, but then turned and came back, cutting their walk short, he said.

“They stopped when we met and asked if we would like to accept a gift. They then gave us their CamelBak sachet of water and said, ‘Please accept this gift.’”

Tate said it was easily accepted as they forgot their water in their vehicle.

With this gift, they completed the four-mile loop with elevations of just over 305 meters (1,000 feet).

“We spoke of this couple’s generosity in cutting their plans short so that we could continue the walk. We were both very moved by the gesture of two total strangers,” Tate said.

“We hear so much about the unkind deeds that happen on a daily basis and the good deeds or deeds go unnoticed.”

So in an email titled “Shout out to a Vancouver couple,” he reached out to CTV News Vancouver, hoping to share this story of good deeds and thank the couple again.

“I just wanted to let the people of Vancouver know that they live among very good and nice people – or ‘people,’ as we would say in the south – and I’m sure this isn’t the first time this couple has act has shown kindness,’ Tate said.

He hopes the story reaches the couple so that they know that their actions “say more than words” were appreciated.

And he wants the other Vancouver residents to know that they are lucky to have “citizens who subconsciously represent them (so) well.”

Do you know who the couple is? CTV News would like to speak to those involved in the walk.