Hoist Two Hikers

March 08, 2016
Soboba Hills, San Jacinto

Written by Glenn Henderson

I received a call from call coordinator Gwenda Yates that Star 9 (Sheriff’s Aviation) had called for a rescuer to do a hoist rescue in Massacre Canyon. I responded to Hemet Ryan Air base in about 5 minutes. Pilot Chad Marlatt and TFO (technical flight officer) Jerry Osterloh were waiting for me. Chad said that there were two stuck at a cliff in Massacre Canyon and had run out of daylight as it was now 7:30 PM. I loaded two screamer suits into my pack and we took off.

It was a five-minute flight across the San Jacinto Valley to Massacre Canyon. Our stuck couple used their cell phone light to show us where they were. It was a pretty tight area and they were above the third falls with water running through it.

Chad maneuvered the helicopter over them after some pretty demanding reconnoitering to see if we could indeed do the hoist. Finally, Chad and Jerry were satisfied so I hooked up to the hoist and Jerry lowered me about 110 feet directly next to our two subjects. I sent the guy up first explaining that when I sent his girlfriend up next he was to have the seatbelt ready and get her belted in before the TFO could take the hook off. When they were both in the helicopter they dropped the hook back for me, raised me up and we all flew down to Gilman’s Springs Road where our subjects left their car.

Once they were off loaded it was back to Hemet Ryan, me home and Chad and Jerry back on patrol in the sky. Great work Chad and Jerry, they made a tough mission into an easy one.

RMRU Members Involved: Glenn Henderson.