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Saturday evening rescue of three hikers stranded above the waterfall in Eaton Canyon - July 21, 2012

Saturday evening, while team members were prepping to support the Angeles Crest 100 endurance race, a call came in to headquarters regarding three hikers stuck in Eaton Canyon above the first falls. We were able to make cell phone contact with the victims to determine their exact location and instructed them to conserve their phones battery if we should have the need to contact them later.

Once on site, and as we approached the base of Acrophobia Ridge, we were able to make voice contact with the victims. Members of the team headed up Acrophobia Ridge while other members prepped the high line gear and headed to the base of the falls to get better voice contact and hopefully visual contact with the victims.

At the base of the lower falls, we were able to get solid voice and visual contact with the victims. They were instructed to stay in their current location, on the canyon wall between the upper and lower falls, as crews were making their way to them.

When it was determine they victims were uninjured, team members worked to get all three victims to canyon bottom above the lower falls. Once on canyon bottom, it was decided the best option would be to lower each victim, with a rescuer, over the lower falls. Because of low water flow this time of year, it proved to be the safest option.

All three victims were safely lowered to canyon bottom, and escorted out to their vehicle. By the time this operation completed, it was nearly 1:00 A.M. Sunday. 

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Stranded hiker rescued from Acraphobia Ridge Sunday evening July 15th

A call was received around 8:30pm regarding a hiker stuck on some rocks in Eaton Canyon just south of the first water fall. We were able to talk to the informant and obtained information that let us know that he was on the south side of Acrophobia Ridge about 200 feet down. The informant told me that the victim was not injured and seemed safe on a rock ledge but was tired.

Once on scene we found the informants at the base of the scree slope on the south side of Acrophobia Ridge. Six members of the team continued up Acrophobia Ridge while other members remained on the canyon floor with a visual on the victim's location.

The members of the team that ascended the ridge above the victim began setting up a lowering system. Once the system was established, a team member was lowered down to the victim. Because of the loose nature of the slope, the descent was angled to the victims left to reduce the chance of injury from falling rocks. The victim was secured and lowered to the canyon floor. The victim was assessed for injury and escorted out of the canyon where he was transported to his vehicle.

The operation concluded at approximately 1:30am.

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July 11 Eaton Canyon rescue operation runs into the early morning hours

The call came in at approximately 5:40pm for a male hiker stuck on the west ridge of Eaton Canyon. Ultimately, this operation would last nearly 7 hours and prove to be a very technical rescue, requiring multiple rope systems.

Members of the team went into the canyon to meet the victim's companions who guided them to his approximate location. The stuck hiker was on the west side of the canyon directly across from Poison Oak Flats-approximately 210 feet from canyon floor. AMRT proceeded up canyon to Acrophobia Ridge and traversed the ridgeline until victim's exact position was located. Sierra Madre Mountain Rescue crews came in from another trail to provide assistance.

Because of the victim's location approximately 210 feet above the canyon floor, AMRT members had to be lowered down from above. The initial lower down to the victim would end up being approximately 400 feet from the team's position above. Because of the distance of the lower and the likelihood that a secondary lower system would be needed, the decision to send down two rescuers was made.

Once lowered, the rescuers secured the victim and set up a secondary lowering system to lower the victim to the canyon floor. The victim was lowered down a huge rock face to the canyon floor 210 feet below.

After a medical assessment, the victim was determined to be uninjured.

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Team responds to request to assist Sierra Madre Search and Rescue regarding injury at Chantry Flats - July 9, 2012

At approximately 5:30pm on July 9th, the team received a request to assist Sierra Madre Search and Rescue with a reported injury at Chantry Flats. This post will be updated as more information becomes available.

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UPDATE - Team responds to call from lost hiker on Echo Mountain Trail - July 9, 2012

Update: The team located the missing hiker, who actually had called to report that her dog was missing. The missing dog was located. 

Shortly after 1pm on Monday July 9th, the team receved a call from a female hiker who reported she was lost on Echo Mountain. Before specific details could be obtained the call was lost. The team has responded with a search operation. 

This post will be updated as further information is obtained. 

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Team responds to call for missing hikers - July 9, 2012

At 9:15 am on Monday July 9, 2012 the team received a call regarding 2 male hikers who did not return the previous day from a planned hike. 

The team received a description of the missing hikers vehicle, and began a search of trail heads in the Altadena area. 

At approximately 11:00am, contact was made with the missing hikers by members of the Crescenta Valley Sheriff's  Station. The hikers had indeed been lost and chose to camp another night once it got dark. Once morning arrived, they were able to find their way out to their vehicle. 

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23 year old male rescued from above Eaton Canyon falls on June 23rd, 2012

The call came out just before 5pm for a 23 year old male with a possible broken ankle above the waterfall in Eaton Canyon. The first responders from the team arrived at the Pinecrest gate and started to hike into the first falls. It came over the radio that Air 5 was not available, however, fire department helicopters were in the area and one of them would be able to airlift the victim if needed.

Near the base of the first waterfall, we met up with members from the fire department who were waiting for the helicopter to make the airlift. A helicopter arrived on scene and dispatched a medic to access the victim. While on scene, we made contact with others who were in the area when the victim was injured. Apparently he had climbed above second waterfall and jumped off, hitting the bottom of the pool below and injuring his ankle. A member from Sierra Madre Search and Rescue was rappelling at that time with a group of students from Caltech and was assisting the medic on scene with the airlift. The victim was transported to Huntington Memorial Hospital for treatment.

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AMRT responds to Henninger Flats Nature Center Saturday June 23rd, 2012

Altadena Mountain Rescue Team, assisted by the Los Angeles County Fire Department and United States Forest Service, responded to Henninger Flats in response to a psychological rescue. A 28 year old female hiker was located inside the Nature Center at Henninger Flats. She had been hiking all night and into the day from the city of Bellflower to Altadena and had no food or water with her and appeared to be dehydrated. The female hiker was transported to Huntington Memorial Hospital by ambulance for evaluation.

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Team rescues four-legged victim from Sam Merrill trail Sunday June 17th

The team arrived at the Cobb Estate and was briefed on the situation by The Fire Department who was already on scene. We were informed that the victim was located near the 2 mile mark on the Lower Sam Merrill trail and was suffering from heat exhaustion.

A unit was sent to the Echo Mountain trail to come across and down the Lower Sam Merrill trail to the victim. With the victim located near the top of Lower Sam Merrill trail, this route proved to be the fasted option to reach the victim.

As we descended towards the victim, we were informed that it might be a dog, not a human, suffering from heat exhaustion.

Once at Echo Mountain, we made contact with a medic from the Fire Department helicopter. He had cleared the ruins atop Echo Mountain. At that time we proceeded down the trail towards the victim. We located the reporting party who informed us she had called for her dog, not herself. The dog was hot, dehydrated and could not stand.

The helicopter medic advised us that they would airlift the dog and owner. While the litter was prepared, members of the team provided the dog with water in an attempt to cool it down.

Once prepped, the dog, owner and medic were airlifted and transported to Farnsworth Park.

We then transported the dog and owner back to Cobb Estate and requested she take the dog to the vet.

Items to note when hiking with dogs:

  • Dogs get dehydrated, some species quicker than others. Carry plenty of water and a collapsible bowl with you at all times.
  • Allow time for frequent rest and water breaks, preferably in the shade.
  • Dogs cannot communicate physical distress until the situation is serious. Observe you dog and be aware of signs of overheating or exhaustion.
  • Don't hike during the hottest part of the day; instead begin your hike early in the morning or late in the afternoon.
  • If possible, choose a trail that follows a stream that will allow access to the water.
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Critically injured hiker airlifted from Coyote Canyon on June 9, 2012

The call came out at 10:44 on June 9th for an injured hiker in Coyote Canyon. AMRT responded and on scene were met by an informant who told us the victim was injured and up canyon. Near the base of the first waterfall we met another informant who stated the victim had climbed up the left side of the waterfall and headed up canyon. The team continued up canyon towards the victim.

The victim had fallen off the side wall of the canyon but it was unknown how far. The victim, was in altered levels of consciousness and suffered from shortness of breath along with lacerations to his forehead.

L.A. County Sheriffs Air 5 responded and dropped a medic on scene to further assess the situation. The victim, suffering from two collapsed lungs along with other injuries, was placed on a backboard and packaged in a litter in preparation for evacuation and transportation to Huntington Memorial Hospital.

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The team said goodbye to a long time member and friend today

ron jack

Ron's passion was search and rescue and law enforcement. He was a member of the Altadena Mountain Rescue Team for more than 30 years (serving as Chief for several years) and an instructor for the L.A. Sheriff's Academy for 15 years. Ron Jack passed away at home on May 5th surrounded by friends and family. He is survived by his four children,in addition to his 13 grandchildren, six great grandchildren, brother and sister.

ron jack memorial team

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A new video has been added to the team YouTube page

During a training exercise I decided to record the lowering process from the victims perspective.

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AMRT participated in a joint training exercise with LA County Fire, National Forest Service and Montrose SAR

AMRT participated in a jooint training exercise with LA County Fire, National Forest Service Fire and Montrose Search and Rescue May 22-24, 2012. The exercise took place up Angeles Crest Highway, and included a number of rescue scenario simulations, including helicopter rescues. For some pictures from that day, visit the gallery


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Images from Sunday's training at Devils Gate have been added to the gallery

Images from Sunday's training where the team worked on raising and lowering victims have been posted to the gallery.

Click here to view

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Recent comment in this post
Guest — ht01
It looked very warm that day!
Tuesday, 05 June 2012 8:08 AM
1581 Hits
1 Comment

AMRT speaks with kids from the Altadena VIDA program

AMRT was asked to speak to the kids from the Altadena VIDA (Vital Intervention and Directional Alternatives) program.
We talked to them about hiking safety, self reliance, and what to pack on a hike. A group of 13 youths along with Deputies from the VIDA program were led
on a hike to the Eaton Canyon waterfall. We pointed out poison oak, and stressed the importance of staying on the trail. We answered a multitude of questions from the kids,
as the majority of them were first time hikers.

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(Vital Intervention and Directional Alternatives (VIDA) is a structured 16-week program for non-violent, at-risk youth between the ages of 11 and 17½.
Through collaboration between the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, community-based organizations, volunteers, schools and families, the program
teaches youth the value of effective decision-making and taking responsibility for their futures.)

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Eaton Canyon Waterfall PSA


THERE IS NO TRAIL TO THE SECOND WATERFALL! Please do not believe misinformation about visiting the 2nd Waterfall at Eaton Canyon. There is NOT a trail. Death and injury occur every year as people try to hike to it. You risk your life and the life of rescue workers that must come to your aid. The shale geology of the area can easily and readily give way. If you or a friend think about trying to make it to the second waterfall, please stop and think about what will happen if you DON'T make it.

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78 year old man rescued after fall from Lower Sam Trail

The page came out at 1420 with reports of a 78 year old male who fell off the Lower Sam trail. We were able to make cell phone contact with the victim and determine he was uninjured and in a safe location. He had water and a GPS and was able to relay his coordinates and altitude. He was informed we had a crew responding and to hold in that location as it would take a little while before we got to him.

After ascending the Lower Sam Trail, the team made voice and then visual contact with the victim. He was about 1 mile up the trail, and had fallen approximately 40 feet down the slope.

After establishing a good anchor point, a team member made his way down to the victim and did a quick assessment, after which he was placed in a harness and helmet.  Once the victim was safe on the trail, another assessment was performed. Once it was determined he was uninjured, we slowly walked him down the trail.

After arrival at the trailhead with the victim, we performed a head to toe assessment including mental status. The victim did well and besides some abrasions and minor lacerations was in good condition.

This victim was better prepared than most, having in his possession a cell phone, GPS and a supply of water. Many victims have nothing more in their possession than the clothes on their back. Regardless of the length of your outing, always head out prepared. As an added safety step, take a few minutes to fill out the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Search and Rescue – Hiking Plan.

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A compilation video from the training on Sunday April 15 has been added to the teams YouTube channel

A compilation video from the training on Sunday April 15 has been added to the teams YouTube channel. Watch below or Click here to see other team videos. 

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Rappelling, Ascending and Raising Systems training images from Sunday at Devils Gate have been added to the gallery

The team completed a successful day of skills traiing, covering rappelling, ascending and raising systems at Devils Gate.

30 new images have been added to the gallery, click here to view them.

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An evening of knots and rappelling training took place April 5th at Devils Gate

An evening of knots and rappelling training took place April 5th at Devils Gate. Check out the gallery for some images from the session. 

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Recent comment in this post
Guest — Observant
In the first picture, it looked like that bowline took a while to tie.
Saturday, 14 April 2012 12:12 AM
1930 Hits
1 Comment
Altaldena mtnrescue altadena mountai rescue logo 1960-70 Altadena Mountaineers 72dpi mra 72dpi


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