updated 1/3/2012 12:49:46 PM ET 2012-01-03T17:49:46

iPhone to the rescue!

A Maryland man lost while hiking on New Year's Eve is thanking modern technology for his rescue, MyFoxDC reports.

Christopher Tkacik wasn't alone out in the woods, he had his best friend and hiking companion with him, his dog named Boo. The pair are back home in Mount Airy, Md., safe and sound, rescued with the help of his smartphone by helicopter after being lost in the woods.

Tkacik and his pooch were hiking in Gambrill State Park when they crossed the same creek for the fourth time and knew they were lost. He called 911 and the sheriff sent a helicopter.

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At home, his wife Aysem sent Tkacik a text message.

"At 5:23 p.m., I ask, ‘Where are you?’" Aysem Tkacik says, reading the message that is still on her phone. "And he goes, 'Lost. Police on their way.'"


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"Bad thing, but good thing," Tkacik explains. "And she said, 'Where are you?' I really don't know."

"And I keep asking 'Ok. Do I need to worry?’" Aysem asked.

“No,” Tkacik responded in the text conversation.

Tkacik was reassured by his iPhone.

"Having a charged phone made a world of difference," says Tkacik. "If I didn't have a phone, I would have been stuck really bad."

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But he says he couldn't trust the Map application.

"It kept telling me that I'm here," he says, pointing to a location on his phone.

But he knew that he wasn't.

As soon as he heard the police helicopter, Tkacik turned on the phone's flashlight, which caught the flight crew's eye.

"It's really scary," Aysem says. "You have no idea what kind of an ending it's going to have."

After four hours of searching, two rescuers eventually rappelled 150 feet down from a park police helicopter and escorted Tkacik and his best friend Boo out of the woods.

"He gave me Steve Jobs biography for Christmas," Aysem says. "And I started reading it. Steve Jobs with the iPhone -- oh my gosh -- technology's good."

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