Man cut switchbacks and got lost

January 1, 1991
Idyllwild, South Ridge Trail

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By Bill Blaschko, M.D.

On the evening of January 1, the team was called out for an overdue hiker on South Ridge Trail. I was the first team member to arrive at the Idyllwild Fire Station and there I met Anna Li, the wife of the missing hiker. Ann reported to me that about half way from the trail head to Tahquitz Peak she had become separated from her husband when he took a "short-cut" off the trail. Anna described he husband Ming as very athletic but not very knowledgeable about the wilderness.

It was well after dark when we began to deploy teams to search likely locations. Just as teams were getting into the field, Mr. Li walked out to Mountain Center. There was a general feeling of relief at base camp when we found out that Ming was in good condition, especially for Anna.

This ma sound like a short, undistinguished, mission, but I classify it as one of RMRU’s most successful because it got us a new member. Ming and Anna Li are both instructors at the Idyllwild School of Music and the Arts. Anna had some previous interest in mountain rescue and came to the very next team meeting. Anna is now an active and important member of our team, thanks to her husband’s "short-cut".