A Texas man was hiking on the Westfork Trail of the Indian Canyons Monday evening when he had to be lifted from the mountain by a Riverside County sheriff's helicopter. It was the second hiker that had to be rescued by the Palm Springs Mounted Police Search and Rescue team within a 24-hour time frame.
Lester Strait called the Palm Springs Police Department when he became stranded around 5:30 p.m. He said he had been hiking and ran out of daylight and was planning on spending the night on the trail. Authorities recommended he be helped off the mountain because of the evening weather forecast and his lack of warm clothing.
Members of the Palm Springs Mounted Police Search and Rescue unit were sent out to find Strait. The rescue unit was helped by the Riverside County Sheriff's Air Operations Division.
Straight helped guide rescuers to his location and he was airlifted from the mountain; he wasn't injured.
Search and Rescue handles dozens of calls like this every year and would like to remind everyone that with lower temperatures, the risk of hiking in these treacherous mountains increases. They recommend that every hiker be well-hydrated and in good physical condition before beginning the hike and should have several liters of water each. They should always tell a friend where they are going, dress appropriately in bright colors (not green, brown or black) and carry a cell phone with a strong battery.