Scott Davidson and Angie Paulson

On the evening of February 3, 2001, Angie Paulson met her boyfriend Scott Davidson at a friend’s house at Rabbit Lake, near Kenora, Ontario in central Canada. At around midnight, after listening to music for a while, they started on the trip home. They went on Scott’s snowmobile, along the frozen water of Lake of the Woods. The temperature was about -15 C. Scott was wearing a heavy snowmobile suit, but Angie was not very warmly dressed and Scott was worried about her. He gave her his jeans and his face mask and he decided to take a shortcut on the way home to make the trip shorter.

Scott knew the area very well. He loved the outdoors and was constantly outside at all times of the year, either in his snowmobile, his boat, or his four-by-four truck. And he’d used the shortcut he took that night twice within the past twenty-four hours.

As Angie tells the story, everything went well for the first ten minutes of their trip, but then Scott suddenly slowed down and started to look around as if he were lost. Then, he sped up and Angie could tell they were driving through slush and that there was open water nearby. Suddenly the snowmobile slipped under the ice and Angie and Scott were thrown into the freezing water.

Again and again they both tried to get a hold on a piece of solid ice so they could pull themselves out of the water, but every time they touched the ice it broke off in their hands. Eventually Angie got out of the water and managed to help Scott get out too. They lay on the ice. They were limp and exhausted, and, because the effects of severe frostbite were beginning, they felt tempted to sleep. Angie forced herself to sit up. When she did this, her hair, which had frozen to the ice, cracked loudly.

They started walking, holding on to each other. Several times they gave up, lay down, and then, a few minutes later got up and kept going. In the distance they could see the lights of a bridge, and quite close, just a little further down the shore, they could see a cabin. Finally they reached it and managed to break some glass in the door and get in. The cabin was dark and, because no one had been in it for several months, it was extremely cold.

Inside the cabin, they took a covering from the back of a couch and got under it, but it soaked up water from their clothes and froze too. They tried to get out of their clothes, but this was very difficult because their fingers were frozen. Angie knocked her legs against a table to try to get her boots off. When her frozen legs hit the table they sounded like they were made of metal. They tried to stay awake, but, finally, they fell asleep.

When they woke up in the morning, Scott could not move very much. Angie found a rotary phone and managed to dial zero. Help came before long, but it was too late for Scott. His heart stopped and he died. Angie survived.Later, the owner of the cabin said there were electric heaters, matches and lots of dry clothes there.

- information from: The Globe and Mail(Toronto, Canada) 01.02.24