WELLFLEET, Mass. — The little Cape Cod girl thought she’d lost her new bike forever when she tumbled off a rickety bridge over a muddy stream in Wellfleet 42 years ago.

But the bike has been found — by the now grown woman’s own wife.

Lisa Brown tells the Cape Cod Times (http://bit.ly/KX6O8h ) she was 11 when she lost control while riding over the Herring River in 1970 and fell in. She came up “smelling like a snapping turtle” but could not locate her bike in the muddy depths.

Deirdre Olinger was walking along the stream this spring when she spotted a rusted bike tangled in the undergrowth about a quarter mile from the bridge.

Brown, tipped off by the banana seat, knew immediately it was hers, describing the discovery like “finding a long lost friend.”