WEST HILLS (CBSLA.com) — Two sisters who were stranded overnight in the brutally cold Tehachapi Mountains were found Wednesday with the help of some leftover fruit peels.
Ariel Fitzmorris, 16, and her sister, 21-year-old Allison, left around 1:30 p.m. on New Year’s Day to go hiking in the area of Pine Mountain Club near Frazier Park.
They were reported missing by family members around 8 p.m. when they didn’t return home.
“My understanding is that they went for a hike and didn’t show up on time. So…(the family) called search and rescue,” said the girls’ grandfather, Neil Fitzmorris.
Search and rescue teams, however, were unable to locate Ariel and Allison after combing the area that night.
The girls’ brother said the Los Angeles Police Department also tried finding them by tracking their phones, but they left their cells at home.
Then, almost two hours into the search on Wednesday morning, officials found some food the girls had taken with them on the hike.
“They had some oranges. We were able to track them off of some of the orange peels,” said Sgt. Ken Smith of the Kern County Sheriff’s Department Search & Rescue Team.
Both girls were found about 1.5 miles away from where they were last seen.
Ariel and Allison were taken to the hospital to be evaluated.