Man rescued after becoming disoriented in snowy mountains |

Man rescued after becoming disoriented in snowy mountains

by F.T. Norton
Carson City Sheriff's Deputy Jarrod Adams tries to talk to disoriented truck driver, Chris Keiser, on Tuesday. Keiser's truck was found alongside Spooner Summit with its engine running. As deputies prepared to call in search and rescue, Keiser, was found wandering in the snow. Police believe he may have been under the influence of narcotics.

A truck driver, disoriented and wearing only one shoe, was found wandering in Wednesday morning’s snow storm alongside Highway 50 West near Spooner Summit.

Chris Kieser, 41, of Eugene, Ore., was discovered about 9:40 a.m. in the brush as he stumbled aimlessly away from the highway. Authorities had found his tractor-trailer parked on the shoulder a quarter-mile from the summit after a motorist called emergency dispatchers to report that a man appeared to be lying behind the truck.

Carson City deputies discovered a plaid sleeping bag partially covered in snow at the rear of the truck and footprints leading into the tree line on the north side of the highway. During a cursory search, a flashlight was found, but no sign of Kieser.

As search and rescue crews were preparing to respond, Kieser was spotted by Nevada Appeal photographer Rick Gunn on the south side of the highway about 300 yards from the truck. Gunn had gone to the scene after hearing the initial call.

Keiser was disoriented, wearing only one tennis shoe and carrying the other in the ankle-deep snow. Deputies believe he may have been under the influence of drugs.

When Deputy Jarrod Adams approached Kieser and asked if the truck along the highway was his, he responded, “Why would that be my truck?”

Kieser was taken to Carson-Tahoe Hospital by ambulance, where he was treated. He was released Wednesday evening.

During a search of the truck, owned by Lucas Trucking in Monroe, Ore., deputies found a syringe and other drug paraphernalia.

Kieser said he has driven trucks for 18 years and lives in Eugene with his parents.

Charges could be filed pending the results of the investigation.