Rescue San Jacinto Hut

January 4, 2019

Written by Tyler Shumway

The team received a call out at 7:00pm Friday night while we were gearing up for training at the Ski Hut on Mt. Baldy. We were informed that two subjects were stranded at the summit hut on San Jacinto Peak. Ray, Kevin, Shani, Kaitlyn, Josh, Donny and I reported to the Tram while Tony, Dana and Gary turned around since we had enough people.

We were briefed by the Sheriff Deputy that the two subjects were able to maintain contact via cell phone. It was confirmed that they sheltered in the summit hut, were cold and were not prepared to stay the night. Shani, Kaitlyn and I would hike up while the others would run base and be on standby in case further resources were needed.

Rescuers ready to go

Rescuers ready to leave base (Shani, Kaitlyn, and Tyler)
Photo by Kevin Kearn.

Our hike started at 10:30pm with full packs containing extra food and warm gear for our subjects. We made it to the hut at 2:30am and both subjects were found in emergency sleeping bags provided in the hut. Subjects were not suffering from hypothermia or cold related injuries. Hot tea, warm clothing and food was provided to lift their spirits. We learned that they took the first tram up at 10:00am and took 6 hours to get to the peak. By this time the sun was already setting, and they started to get cold feet. They found the summit shelter and decided they were not comfortable descending and activated 911.

After melting snow for water, it was decided that we would hike out back to the tram. Temperatures have been extremely variable on the summit over that past week and luckily, we had mild temps in the mid-20s. Subjects were given down jackets, wind pants, thick wool socks and micro spikes for the hike out. The team made it back to the tram station without incidence by 7:00am.

RMRU Members Involved: Gary Farris, Donny Goetz, Josh Gould, Tony Hughes, Kevin Kearn, Dana Potts, Kaitlyn Purington, Shani Pynn, Tyler Shumway, and Ray Weden.