Marion Mountain Rescue

October 27, 2018
Seven Pines Trail, Mt. San Jacinto

Written by Shani Pynn

At roughly 8:30 PM on Saturday the team was called out to help a lost hiker in the Marion Mountain area. Also, at roughly 8:30 PM, I was laying in bed catching up on some much-needed rest after being up all night on our last rescue at Suicide Rock. I normally call in quite clearly no matter what time we get a call out, but my response was a mite groggy this time and went something like this: ďHey, this is Shani Pynn. Iím heading out to the Marion Mountain Trailhead, but if you get enough people please let me know because I would really like to go back to sleep.Ē So, up I got and started to get ready to go. Checking in with Gwenda, our Call captain this evening, I learned it was myself and Dana responding tonight. We would be hiking tonight. This didnít really bother me though, since I was up and rearing to go at this point. So, off to the mountain I went. Dana was picking up the truck and would meet me at the trailhead.

I arrived at the trailhead just before 11 pm and met up with the deputies. Devin, who I had met the previous night introduced me to Tim, another Deputy who we were authorized to request to help us out tonight if needed. They informed me that our subject, an adult male, had been located by Star 9 at a point near the seven pines trail roughly 1.5 miles from the trailhead. He had apparently hiked up Marion Mountain trail with a friend, our reporting party, and become separated and taken another path on the way back. The Deputies asked if I knew of a connecting trail between Marion Mountain trail and Seven Pines Trail. As I did not, we decided to hike in from the Seven Pines trailhead once Dana arrived. Shortly after this point he did, and we finished preparations to hike out. As Devin had vouched for him as a good hiker/climber/etc., we requested that Deputy Dunlap (Tim) hike in with me. That way Dana could stay behind with the vehicle at base in case of any additional resource needs or callouts. I hiked in with Tim and this setup worked out well.

We arrived at the Seven Pines trailhead at just after midnight and began hiking in. We checked in with base every half hour or so and began trying call outs when we were past the last terrain feature between us and our subjects reported location. We contacted him at about 1:15 am and arrived at his location shortly after. He was cold, but happy to see us. We gave him some food, water, and a warm jacket, and he was ready and eager to hike out and generate some body heat. He told us he was visiting the area from Texas and had hiked up Marion with an old friend. They got separated and he ended up on a different trail on the way back down. Since it was unfamiliar and harder to follow, he found a spot with cell reception and stayed put. We thanked him for staying as that made our job much easier in finding him. We hiked back to Timís vehicle without incident and arrived back at the Marion Mountain trailhead by about 2:45 am.

Rescuers and Subject at Base

Deputy Dunlap, Subject, Shani, and Dana at Base
Photo by RSO Deputy Devin.

RMRU Members Involved: Dana Potts and Shani Pynn.