LOS ANGELES – New details have been released about the circumstances in which a pair of missing hikers were found after their rescue Thursday night in what one search-and-rescue group dubbed the “Mt. Baldy Miracle,” KTLA reported.
Eric Desplinter, 33, of Chino Hills and Gabrielle Wallace, 31, of Rancho Cucamonga, were spotted around a small campfire by an aerial crew searching Cucamonga Canyon, according to a news release from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.
They were trapped between two waterfalls, each about 20 to 25 feet high, sheriff’s officials said.
The helicopter was dispatched to that area after a ground unit began following two sets of footprints that were found in Cucamonga Canyon.
One by one, an air rescue crew helped lift the stranded hikers to safety as the chopper’s rotor blades and tail rotor narrowly avoided trees and rocks, which were just 10 feet away.
The Sheriff’s Department released dramatic video of the pair being hoisted to safety before they were airlifted to Mount Baldy Fire Station.
The hikers were stuck in between two waterfalls about 20-25ft on each side. The helicopter's rotor blades and tail rotor were only 10 ft away from the trees & rocks. A great job to ALL ground and aircrews for their dedication. @SBCSDrobrine @VolunteerForces pic.twitter.com/GclJXTpOyT
— San Bernardino County Sheriff (@sbcountysheriff) April 11, 2019