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Jesse Burke

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Local teens recall cold night spent in Routt National Forest

Dig a pit and get ready to wait. That was 17-year-old Moffat County resident Justin McAlexander’s first thought when he realized he and his two friends, brothers Jesse and Mason Burke, 17 and 13 respectively, had become stranded Feb. 19 while snowmobiling on Black Mountain near Freeman Reservoir. “It’s instinct, you’ve got to do this to survive,” said McAlexander, who’s been involved in Boy Scouts since fifth grade and attained the rank of Life Scout. The group set out from Craig with two snowmobiles about 7 a.m.

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