Arkansas college students survive 30 hours trapped in cave

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Three college students got lost while exploring a cave in Arkansas. (WLS)

Three Arkansas State University students were trapped underground for nearly 30 hours after getting lost exploring a cave in Arkansas.

Casey Sherwood, a soon to be senior and Cub Scout leader, was leading two incoming freshman on an expedition of the Blowing Cave, where crevasses can reach a depth of 40 feet, when he suddenly realized they were lost.

"We were in there for about an hour and then I felt scared all of a sudden," Sherwood said.

Nearly 30 hours went by as the trio huddled together to stay warm, sitting in triangle formation and breathing into their shirts to generate hot air.

Sherwood's wife alerted authorities of the group's disappearance and emergency personnel responded to the scene around 1:45 a.m. Firefighters and cave experts from a local college entered the cave, of which only a mile and a half is officially mapped.

The three students began yelling and whistling, hoping to alert any rescuers to their whereabouts, about 30 minutes from the cave's entrance.

After a long wait, the students were found and pulled from the cave.

"They say that once you're in a cave for over 24 hours at that time it's no longer search and rescue it's just a recovery mission," Sherwood said. "So plenty of people were rather surprised to see us walking out of that cave."

The three students only suffered a mild case of hypothermia.

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