A hiker who is taking on a charity challenge with his son feared for his life as he got dragged into sinking mud during a visit to Aldenham Reservoir.
Earlier this month, Sam Rolnick was strolling with his 12-year-old son, Jacob, at the reservoir in preparation for a 700-mile walk for mental health charity, Mind, when he suddenly found himself sinking fast into what he describes as a “quicksand”.
Sam said: “We stopped to have a chat with a fisherman that we passed by, and as my son was talking to him, I literally fell into quicksand.
“I was sinking really fast – I was around waist-deep within about 15 seconds and just about managed to lean forward and quickly haul myself out.
“It really was a frightening experience. Luckily, my natural instincts got me out of trouble, but anyone with less awareness or a child could easily have died.”
The photo above shows Sam’s muddy clothes just after the incident.
The dangerous patch of land used to be a part of the lake, before the owners of the reservoir, Liberty Lake Leisure, started draining the water to ease pressure on a dam wall.
While it is off the public footpaths, it is still accessible for walkers and Sam warned that the mud he started sinking into wasn’t the only part of the land with that consistency.
Sam added: “I wanted to share my experience and expose this so that residents walking nearby take caution.”
RadlettNews has reached out to Liberty Lake Leisure for comment.
At the time of writing, Sam and Jacob are about to embark on their 700-mile walk from Brighton to Dunnet Head, which will take over 45 days at an anticipated pace of 15 miles per day.
To donate or follow their journey, go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/beenthereseenitdunnet