NEAR LEBEC (CBSLA) – A Goleta man was rescued Wednesday after getting lost in the snowy Los Padres National Forest while cross-country skiing with only a can of water and a box of raisins.
According to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office, at about 1:40 p.m. Wednesday, 63-year-old Jeffrey Everhard called 911 to report that he had gotten lost after summiting Mount Pinos.
Mount Pinos, at an elevation of 8,800 feet, is located in northern Ventura County, near the border with Kern County, and about 40 miles west of the town of Lebec.
Everhard told emergency dispatchers that he only had one 8-ounce can of water and a box of raisins for provisions, the sheriff’s department said. His cell phone did not have GPS capabilities, so deputies could not use it to track his location, the sheriff’s department added.
In the end, a deputy was forced to put on snowshoes and trek up two miles by foot along the Mount Pinos trail in order to reach Everhard, who was found dehydrated but in good condition.
The deputy helped guide Everhard back down to the trail.
This is at least the third time since January that hikers have gotten stranded in snowy conditions in the Los Padres National Forest.
On Feb. 11, six dirt bikers were rescued after getting stranded overnight near Alamo Mountain. Deputies, along with a Fillmore Mountain Search and Rescue Team, reached the men early Monday and brought them out with a Snowcat.
On Jan. 23, a couple and their two dogs were also rescued from Alamo Mountain after their vehicle got snowed in for a full two weeks. The couple, both in their 30s, and their dogs had run out of food and were melting snow for water.
The couple were finally able to hike out to an area with enough cell phone reception to call 911. They were airlifted to safety by a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department chopper.
Deputies advise people hitting the wilderness to let someone known where they are going and when they expect to return. They should also make sure to carry enough food and water, wear warm clothing and keep proper navigational tools, such as GPS, maps and a compass.