Once they became disoriented, two Gorham teenagers lost in the Maine woods did the right thing: they found shelter and stayed put until help arrived early Thursday.

The boys, 16-year-old Nathaniel Nadeau and 15-year-old Garrick Brown, did not return on time from a hike up 1,900-foot Debouillie Mountain in Aroostook County.

Jen Brophy, who owns Red River Sporting Camps about 20 miles southwest of Saint Francis, said Mark Nadeau of Gorham approached her camp about 8 p.m. Wednesday, saying the boys were about six hours overdue.

Brophy phoned the Maine Warden Service, and by about midnight two wardens arrived and the trio set out to look for the hikers.

After searching a few trails where Brophy believed the teenagers could have gotten lost while descending the mountain, the team circled Gardner Pond, calling and whistling for the pair.

They made voice contact with the boys, but the searchers had to hike around the pond to reach them.

“We called and they called back,” Brophy said. “We didn’t know if they were just lost, or lost and injured, or what happened.”

The teenagers were unharmed and in fairly good spirits when Brophy and the wardens found them in a lean-to around 3:30 a.m.

“They were a little bit hungry, a little bit chilly. They were quite smart when they realized they were not where they should be,” she said. “They found a good place to be and stayed right there.”

Rather than have the boys hike the three or four miles out, a Warden Service plane transported them across Gardner Pond and Debouillie Pond.

“It was an excellent learning experience for them,” Brophy said.