Alaskan survives weeks of frigid temperatures after cabin fire

Video: Alaska Man Rescued After Writing SOS on Snow, Waving Down Trooper Helicopter Crew

WATCH: Stunning Video Shows Rescue of Alaska Man Stranded in the Snow for Nearly a Month

"Steele's shoulder-length hair, chestnut brown near the roots fading to golden blond near its frayed tips, hung matted and dreadlocks-like over his neck", Alaska State Trooper Ken Marsh wrote in the press release.

In the weeks after the fire, Mr Steele said he survived on the remnants of canned rations and peanut butter, sleeping in a snow cave and makeshift shelter that he built around his wood stove. Responding officers found him waving his arms at his remote homestead about 70 miles north of Anchorage. He described his home as a Quonset hut - a lightweight frame, covered in plastic tarps - that he bought from a Vietnam veteran.

According to the Daily Mail, he said: "Snow caves are pretty nice for survival". A flaming piece landed on the roof.

Tyson Steele, 30, said the fire in the remote home had started after he mistakenly put cardboard in his wood stove to help light it. Once he went outside, he saw that the entire roof was on fire.

The hut, Steele told the troopers, "goes up into flames faster than, like, I can even imagine".

He began ordering every little thing he could, consisting of coverings and a rifle yet his actual top priority was his 6-year-old delicious chocolate laboratory, Phil.

He ordered Phil outside, and when he jumped off the bed, Mr Steele assumed he'd left the house. He thought the dog had escaped but only realised he was trapped inside when he heard howling from the burning cabin. By morning light, he said, "I just [sat] down by my burning house", realising he had lost almost everything he owned. Just a visceral - not angry, not sad - just. all I could express, just scream.

He didn't know enough about the surrounding area, including which of the many waterways in the area would be frozen over enough to cross, Steele told the troopers.

The Utah native survived on cans of beans and peanut butter before he was rescued. There, he could keep a fire going perpetually, using it to heat up his smoke-damaged canned food that "tastes like my home, just burning", he said.

Steele's friends eventually called troopers to check on him, and on January 9 a troopers helicopter crew landed to rescue him, according to the report.

"It made me break another rule that I'd established for years, and that was to be strict on my communication weekly - call my parents and let them know I'm good", he lamented. He said if no one came after 35 days, he would venture out of the area.

The first two nights after the blaze Steele spent in a snow cave before he was able to put together a makeshift shelter from what remained from his now-burned out cabin, scavenging together tarps and scrap lumber to build a tent-like shelter around the woodstove. He had stamped an SOS signal in snow.

Steele also said that it was so cold that his urine would "freeze".

State troops posted a video of the helicopters' rescue teams seeing Tyson Steele on Thursday, alongside the huge "SOS" message he had stamped in the snow. After getting a shower and warm food from McDonald's, Steele said, he would probably spend time with family.

"I had a headlamp for maybe 10 or 11 days, but I only had the batteries that were in there", Steele told state troopers.

His family had a dog, he said, and that was exactly what he needed.

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