Hiker slid 300 feet

January 4, 1986
Trail to Round Valley

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By Kevin Walker

OORDINATING - Head Ranger at Long Valley, Bob Foster talks with Tram personnel to coordinate transporting injured hiker Brett Jones from the Mountain Station to the valley floor and a waiting ambulance, after Brett had been evacuated from an ice chute near Cornell Peak. (photo by Jim Fairchild)The year started off early with a call from the Banning Station of the Riverside Count Sheriff's Department to respond to the Palm Springs Tramway and be prepared for a winter type rescue. Twelve members met at the lower station and, while preparing gear, learned what we had been called out for. While hiking down the ridge that leads from Frank Miller Peak to Cornell Peak along with several friends, Brett Jones dropped a piece of clothing down one of the many steep northerly facing slopes. Brett attempted to descend and retrieve the item, and while doing so lost control and slid approximately 300 feet and was moderately injured. A companion went out and contacted the rangers at the Long Valley Ranger Station. Led by head ranger Bob Foster, a party responded to the accident scene and rendered aid. As part of our close relationship with the State Park, Bob contacted the Sheriff and requested that we respond also.

Packs were loaded for a light trip and everyone boarded the tram car. Soon we were up at the Mountain Station and on our way down the concrete walk that leads to Long Valley. After stopping in at the Long Valley Ranger Station we learned that the rescue party was enroute down the trail from Round Valley to Long Valley with Brett in the litter. We hiked up the trail and eventually met the group. Team physician Ray Hussey examined Brett and we were soon again under way. The rangers had done a fine job but had paid the price for their efforts and were wearing down. We helped by taking over the carry out to Long Valley. In a short time everyone was back to Long Valley, and Brett was taken up to the tram for a ride down to the waiting ambulance.

With all secure, members returned home from a successful operation. To the State Park, thanks for the call, and we were glad to be of assistance.