AMRT responds to call for lost hikers in Eaton Canyon - May 29, 2014

While training on the Mt. Wilson Toll Road Bridge, a call came out for two female hikers, with two dogs, lost in Eaton Canyon, one with a possible sprained ankle. Four members were immediately mobilized and began a search of the canyon above the bridge. Minutes later a second team was sent down canyon to clear the area between the bridge and the nature center.

Attempts to reach them by cell phone initially proved unsuccessful. Eventually contact was made with the victims and it was determined they were below the bridge slowly making their way towards the nature center. While the second team continued down canyon in search of the victims, the first team was redeployed, with instructions to go to the nature center and liaison with County Fire that had arrived on scene.

Eventually the second team made contact with the victims near the nature center. They were escorted to the parking area of the nature center where they refused medical treatment. With neither victim appearing to be injured, they were released and sent on their way.

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Week in review - April 5-9, 2014 - Reports of gun shots, broken bones, and stranded hikers

The period of April 5-9, 2014 proved to be a busy one for AMRT. Below is a recap of the operatons the team was involved in during that five day stretch. 


April 5
The Sheriff's department received a call shortly after 10pm stating the sounds of a woman screaming and gunshots were heard in the area of Cobb Estate. A page was sent out asking for available sworn members of AMRT to respond to assist LASD with clearing Cobb Estate and the surrounding terrain. The road from the entrance to Cobb Estate up to the water tank was cleared, with no one found.

A helicopter was called in to sweep the area with infrared, and located a group of individuals under a tree. Contact was made by AMRT members on scene, and after it was determined they were not a threat they were directed to leave the area.

AMRT, along with members of LASD, continued to clear the areas of Los Flores Canyon and Sam Merrill Trail. The source of the person screaming and the gun shots was not discovered.

April 6

A call was received at 2:24pm for 2 injured hikers by the second waterfall in Eaton Canyon. Air 5 was called and notified of the operation, at which point they responded. AMRT proceeded to Pinecrest Gate to liaison with County Fire and Forestry Service. Once on scene, we were informed that Air 5 had lowered a medic to the location of the victim, a 36 year old female with a broken ankle. The victim was attended to by the medic on scene and airlifted to Huntington Memorial Hospital.

April 6

While on the first call a second call came in at 3:12pm for an individual hanging on a cliff in the area of Millard Canyon. With the operation in Eaton Canyon under control, members of AMRT, along with Montrose SAR and County Fire, responded to Brown Mountain Trail.

Ground units began searching the area indicated by the informant while a county helicopter searched from the air. The victim was located by the helicopter, which proceeded to hoist the 22 year old male and transport him to a safe landing zone.

The victim had become lost and wandered off trail and became stranded on a steep mountainside. He only sustained minor scratches and refused transport to the hospital.

April 9

Call came in for 2 hikers stranded above the first waterfall in Eaton Canyon. AMRT responded to the location specified by the informant. While in route communication with Air 5 was established. Based on the location of the victims and the proximity of Air 5 to the scene it was determined an air rescue would be the best option.

AMRT headed to Farnsworth Park to clear a landing zone and receive the victims. Upon making contact with the helicopter, it was then determined that there were in fact 4 victims, all college students at Caltech.

After assessing their condition all 4 victims were released.

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Overnight search ends with successful rescue - April 28, 2014

The call came in shortly before 9pm on Sunday April 27th. A male hiker in his 20's began his day at Cobb Estate around 3pm. Approximately 5 hours into his hike, he found himself lost in the mountains unsure of how to get back. It was at that time he called 911 and asked for help.

Contact with the victim was made via cell phone for a brief moment before his battery died, allowing the operations leader to obtain some vague details as to his approximate location.

AMRT began dispatching teams to search the area, with a focus on the trails and terrain around Echo Mountain. A county helicopter initially began a search of the area along with members on the ground, but was forced to turn back due to high winds.

At approximately 4:30am voice contact was made with the missing hiker, and rescue teams believed they were within 500 feet of his location. Because of the rugged terrain, and the fact that he was not on an established trail, finding his exact location proved to be difficult. At first light, Air 5 was deployed to search the area from the air, and within an hour his exact location was determined. At that time a rescuer was lowered from the helicopter to extract the victim. Although cold from his night out without proper clothing, he was not injured.

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AMRT participates in annual Mountain Rescue Association Reaccreditation March 1, 2014 - Images added to the gallery

Every year, AMRT, along with all accredited Search & Rescue Teams in the state of California, gather to be tested on a set of disciplines to ensure they continue to maintain the skills needed to perform the often highly technical rescues our terrain demands. This years discipline was search and tracking, and was hosted by Placer County in the town of Auburn, located just outside of Sacramento.

Search and tracking reaccreditation consists of three disciplines; Man Tracking, Grid Search and Emergency Location Transmitter Search. AMRT passed all three disciplines. To view pictures from the day, click here

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Call for missing hikers becomes overnight search that continues this morning - February 6, 2014

UPDATE: The hikers have been found, details will be posted as they become available. 


A call came in shortly before 6pm on Wednesday February 5th for two male hikers lost in Eaton Canyon. A text message send by one of the hikers to a family member provided vague details as to their location, stating only that they were in the canyon, near powerlines and could hear a waterfall.

Team members located their vehicles at the Nature Center, verifying that they began their day in the Eaton Canyon area. The search began up canyon and continued throughout the night.

As of this posting, the search continues. Information will be updated as it becomes available.

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