Solo male on day hike, did not return

September 15, 1997
San Jacinto Peak

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On Sunday afternoon, a solo male hiker departed from the upper Tram Station, for San Jacinto Peak wearing shorts and a light shirt. Unstable, rainy weather was in evidence but did not deter the hiker. RMRU was notified at 9:00am Monday. Poor weather and high winds prevented an early helicopter search. Ground teams were hampered by heavy rain that obliterated all tracks. In addition, high winds made hope of voice contact virtually impossible. Monday’s search proved empty. Tuesday, a military helicopter began an aerial search which also revealed nothing. Apparently, caught in thick clouds, the hiker had inadvertently descended down the treacherous north face of the peak some 600 feet before realizing he was now in serious trouble. Here he wisely chose to remain rather than risk a fall. On Wednesday morning a second search of the north face by air, spotted the climber. He was lifted off of the rock by the chopper, and despite the length of his ordeal, suffered no serious physical effects. RMRU invested more than 500 man-hours into the search.