Three deer stranded on frozen lake rescued by hovercraft

A father and son recently rescued three deer stranded on a frozen lake in Minnesota with the help of quite the unusual vehicle—a hovercraft.

Doug and James Kenison first learned of the stranded deer after seeing a photo posted by local news station KAAL ABC 6 on Facebook. The photo showed a deer splayed in the middle of Alberta Lea Lake that according to the resident who snapped the photo, had been stranded for two days. The resident called authorities, but no rescue had taken place.

Enter Doug and James, who realized they could put their family business, MedCity Hovercraft, to good use. The pair set out on two hovercrafts to meet the deer and soon discovered there were two more nearby. One by one, they gently tied a yellow rope around each deer’s body and carefully towed the deer across the ice towards a forested coast.

“It looked like one of the deer actually came closer to us. It just seemed like he knew we were there to help,” James told ABC 6 News.

“They weren’t actually stuck in the ice; it was just too slippery that they just couldn’t get their footing.”

However, splayed across the ice, nimble legs frantically sliding, you can’t help feeling sorry for the stranded mammals. (You also can’t help conjuring images of Bambi, either).

While it’s unknown how the deer got into the middle of the lake in the first place, we do know they were safely returned to a place with better footing, or should we say better hooving.

(If you want to watch more deer getting saved from frozen ice, we recommend this fantastic video, which features the inner monologue of a deer as it’s rescued by two strange men in hockey skates.)