A trapped beaver is happy to be free from a pit that it was stuck in after a family from Shawnigan stumbled upon on the distressed animal while hiking.

On Sunday afternoon, Jennifer Buck says her family was hiking near the Mountainaire Campground and RV Park near Cassidy when they saw a group of people gathered near the edge of a cliff.

The family asked the crowd what they were doing and learned that a beaver appeared to be stuck down a steep, roughly six-feet deep hole. The group first attempted to place long logs down the hole for the beaver to use to climb out, but their efforts were unsuccessful.

"They thought maybe it'd climb up the logs and get out," said Jennifer's husband, Dustin. "[But] it did not want to do anything down in that hole."

The group that first found the beaver then left, leaving the Buck family alone with the animal. That's when Dustin decided to climb down into the pit and grab the beaver himself.

"So we could see that it was in distress down there and that it wasn't getting out of the hole," said Dustin. He then grabbed it by the scruff of it's neck, "like you would a rabbit," and released it at the mouth of the pit.

"Happiest beaver you ever met," said Dustin.

The family then stuck around for a few moments to make sure that the beaver did not slip back down into the hole, or off the nearby cliff.

"We noticed he was lethargic and had probably been down there for a few days," said Jennifer. 

"He was a little bit out of it, he probably hadn't eaten for a few days," she added. "So we stuck around to make sure that he didn't wander off the cliff."

The family says that the animal was happily eating once it was freed and that it was still looking for snacks by the time they left. 

Later, the family says a separate group stumbled upon the beaver still eating in the same area, and that they watched it hop into a nearby river and swim away.