4 min read

Sea Lion Gets A Little Lost And Ends Up In The Middle Of The Woods

He was just trying to find his way home.

When the call first came in, everyone at the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office in Washington was a bit confused. When a few officers went to check it out, though, they quickly confirmed it — there was a sea lion heading down a dirt road in the middle of the woods, far away from any kind of water. 

As the officers tried to piece together how a sea lion could have ended up in the middle of the woods, they quickly tried to formulate a plan to get the very confused sea lion back to the water where he belonged. 

lost sea lion
Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office

“This is quite a distance from the Cowlitz River, where there are currently heavy numbers of sea lions feasting on the smelt run,” Troy Brightbill, chief criminal deputy with the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office, told The Dodo. “It is believed the sea lion followed Delameter Creek, possibly through some culverts, and ended up on the rural road. It continued to travel further from water.  At one point, it had moved about [half a] mile in the course of an hour.”

lost sea lion
Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office

The sea lion was clearly trying to find his way back home, but just couldn’t seem to figure it out — so the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, and a few local volunteers came together to help the sea lion make his way back to the water. 

lost sea lion
Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office

Using large pieces of plywood, the team was able to gently guide the very bewildered sea lion into a truck … 

lost sea lion
Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office

… where he was finally secured and ready to be transported back to the river where he came from. 

lost sea lion
Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office

As he was loaded off the truck, the sea lion seemed much less confused and grateful to finally be in the right place again. Everyone watched with a smile as he headed into the river — much more at home there than he could ever hope to be on a dirt road in the middle of the woods.