Return (to go back) – retourner
He was trying to return (go back) to the place he had seen a rat turn hay (retourner) in to a house.
NOTE: There are five different French words that mean "return": revenir, retourner, rentrer. rendre and rembourser.
Which one you need depends on what or where you are returning. The French use retourner to mean go back when the speaker is not at the place they are talking about returning to. For example, this translation for return would be used if you wanted to say: "I want to return to the same ski resort next year."