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Elderly Hiker Who Went Missing In Wrightwood Is Found

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WRIGHTWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Authorities say rescuers have located an elderly hiker who went missing in Wrightwood on Saturday.

A watch commander told CBS2 that Donald Buchanan was in “good condition.”

The 85-year-old experienced hiker found about 10:30 a.m. Sunday along the Baden Powell Trail.

“A Sheriff’s Search and Rescue ground team heard a faint whistle from across a ravine,” Palmdale Sheriff’s said in a department statement. “The team was able to hike closer to the sound of the whistle, and soon made voice contact with Mr. Buchanan.”

According to authorities, Buchanan had gone for a hike in the Vincent Gap area of the Angeles National Forest on Saturday morning.

When he didn’t return home, authorities said that his son — who is a deputy with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department — drove to the area and found his car still parked at the trailhead.

Crew chief Sgt. Rod Kubly recalled the harrowing rescue to KCAL9, and said Buchanan spent the night on a ledge that measured one square foot.

“We got lucky, flew over, and, in fact, I was able to spot him,” Kubly said.

“He was on a cliffside – I’d say a good 300 to 400 feet above the canyon bottom and another 400 feet below the summit.”

Authorities said Buchanan was airlifted to Huntington Memorial Hospital for treatment of mild hypothermia. He released a statement Sunday night through the hospital thanking the people who rescued him.

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