Skyline Rescues

General Palm Springs area.

Skyline Rescues

Postby Ellen » Mon Dec 27, 2021 1:29 pm

Howdy All :)

My last Skyline was on December 19 with Pyrodude, Tracy and Marilyn. The snow was manageable with microspikes and poles. It also helped to know the route. Pyrodude led and Tracy swept -- Marilyn and I were in the middle. I felt like a baby duck following its mother :lol: It took an hour longer than my last Skyline due to the snow. We saw a backpack laying on the traverse :shock: but no evidence of a fall. As we walked up the ramp, a State Park Ranger explained there was a rescue of several people. State Park rangers hiked down to the Skyliners, warmed them up, then hiked them to the tram. This was the last pack left on the route.

The Craigmesiter texted me yesterday asking if I was on Skyline. I responded "Hell no!" Learned this morning that a group of hikers on Skyline were rescued by Riverside Mountain Rescue Unit. Ten RMRU team members hiked down, geared them up and hiked them out. Apparently, one hiker in shorts and tennis shoes slid off the route in an icy section. That individual is still missing :cry:

I have climbed Skyline in winter conditions with crampons, ice-axe and helmet. I have no desire to do that again. The traverse was an icy slope.

Please be careful friends.

From the heart,
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Re: Skyline Rescues

Postby drndr » Mon Dec 27, 2021 5:27 pm

Time for some desert hiking!!

"Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time"
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Location: Riverside

Re: Skyline Rescues

Postby Ellen » Mon Dec 27, 2021 9:32 pm

Update from RMRU:

Last night after RMRU rescued the two stranded hikers successfully, there was a report that there was another stranded hiker out on the mountain. Two members of the team went back out to the Skyline Trail to the hiker’s last known location. They searched throughly around the area, hoping they would not find someone who had slipped, was hypothermic, or even worse. They could not find the stranded hiker. They continued to look for the hiker as they hiked the entire trail from the Palm Springs Tram to the trailhead; over 9 miles and 8000 feet. They made it to the trailhead around 3:30am, unsuccessful in locating the missing hiker. Early this morning another three RMRU team members headed up the Palm Springs Tram at 6:00am. They searched the last known location again in daylight, before the next storm would make the search too dangerous. They searched the area thoroughly, rappelling down surrounding steep gully’s and cliffs, until about 1:30pm. Again, unsuccessful in finding the missing hiker. The team was planning on searching the lower trails during daylight, until they received notification that the hiker was in town, even though his car was at the trailhead. Although the team did not find the hiker on the trail, we were relieved that he was off the trial safe.
So, if you call 911 with your location or activate your SOS with your personal locator beacon, stay put. If you find a way to self evacuate yourself, please call a non emergency line to cancel your 911 request or cancel your PLB SOS request.
Please remember to research the trail, weather, bring the 10 essentials, extra battery for your phone, proper gear for the trail conditions, and have a plan for when something doesn’t go as planned.
Stay safe and stay alive.
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Re: Skyline Rescues

Postby guest » Tue Dec 28, 2021 9:00 am

Thanks for posting Ellen, and congrats on another winter Skyline! The news is all too familiar, and a shame people still attempt this trail in all but good conditions, (including weather). Glad everyone is ok, but, as we know, things don't always turn out that way. Some peoples attitude is rather arrogant regarding their abilities and toughness, (not saying these folks were like that), and it put SAR's folks in very tough, dangerous positions, (I know some of them actually enjoy the challenge).

I really can't imagine hiking all the way down, in the dark, with all the heavy gear these folks carry, all the while searching the terrain, hats off to you guys & gals.

Anyone reading this, (especially those with little experience on Skyline), please take notice that ice has formed. Will it melt, maybe, but more importantly, with several individual storms were getting, the potential for multiple layers is very real. If anyone attempts the trail now, you really need some ice & snow, (& self-arrest) experience. There's been too many cases of people falling, at times to their death, hiking on a top layer of good snow, not knowing there's hard ice just below.
Glad for this rain & snow, should make the mt. (above the tram and other local mtns.) a fun place to explore.
Stay safe and get outside, scott
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Re: Skyline Rescues

Postby Ed » Tue Dec 28, 2021 9:51 am

Check out Taco's new 'Someone Fell Down the Bowl' thread on the San Gabriel Mountains discussion board:

There's a Netflix movie, 'The Father Who Moves Mountains', about a search and rescue in Romania. Very serious and somber, with a lot of emphasis on the human as well as technical problems of SAR.
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