UPDATE: Rescued hiker found unharmed, well-prepared

Officials search for a missing hiker near Mentryville. Courtesy photo from Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station

By Jim Holt & Nikolas Samuels
Signal Staff Writers

A 58-year-old hiker plucked from a ridge in Pico Canyon Sunday suffered no ill effects during his 24-hour ordeal exposed to the elements, having been sufficiently prepared for the outdoors, according to one of his rescuers.

“He was fine.  He just couldn’t get down from the ledge,” Lt. Byron Wainie with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station told The Signal Monday.

The hiker was airlifted to safety after being found in Pico Canyon according to a tweet at 5:24 p.m. from the SCV Sheriff’s Twitter page.

“He had all the necessary stuff to sustain himself,” he said.

Sheriff spokeswoman Shirley Miller said of the hiker: “He was in good condition, physically. He had brought supplies with him in preparation for the hiking trip and so he did not appear to be dehydrated.

“It seems he got lost and couldn’t find his way, and so he made his way to the ridgeline in hopes of being spotted,” she told The Signal.

“His cell phone had died, and so he had no way to reach out for help.”

In a Tweet he posted late Sunday afternoon alongside photographs of the multi-agency rescue, Wainier said: “(He was) spotted by ground units, then airlifted out.”

Once rescue personnel located the hiker, they yelled to him to stay on the ridge line he was on and to wait for the helicopter to airlift him out.

Officials started looking for him around 11 p.m. on Saturday after the hiker’s wife reported that he did not come home, according to officials with the SCV Sheriff’s Station.

Rescue teams and helicopters searched for the missing hiker.

“He wasn’t injured,” said Wainie.

“He couldn’t find his way back to the trail because of the rough terrain, so he climbed to the ridge top to wait to be spotted by ground units or air units.”

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