Stranded teenage climbers rescued from freezing California peak

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Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Special Enforcement Bureau

A pair of teenage rock climbers have been rescued after becoming stranded overnight on a frozen mountain in Southern California, officials said.

They were climbing Tahwitz Peak when the storm hit trapped them about 900 feet up the mountainside when the temperature dropped, KTLA reported.

They did not have the proper gear to spend the night in the freezing temperatures and had developed hypothermia by the time rescuers and paramedics removed them from the cliff on Sunday, Oct. 23, rescuers and KTLA reported.

A helicopter from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Bureau of Special Enforcement assisted in the rescue, the department said on Twitter. The department shared dramatic video footage of the rescue operation, which shows rescuers descending from the helicopter and climbing climbers inside the chopper.

The department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Tahquitz Peak is located in the San Jacinto mountain range about 110 miles east of Los Angeles.

Two rock climbers died on the same mountain nearly a month ago, McClatchy News previously reported.

One of them was former NFL player Gavin Escobar, 31, and his climbing partner Chelsea Walsh, 33. Both were from Huntington Beach.

Another tourist died in the same area earlier this year after being injured in a fall. The deaths followed others in the same area, prompting “one law enforcement agency to warn people to take precautions when hiking,” the Desert Sun reported.

Brooke (she/they) is a real-time reporter for McClatchy covering LGBTQ+ and Western news. They studied journalism at the University of Florida and previously covered LGBTQ+ news for the South Florida Sun Sentinel. When they are not writing stories, they enjoy spending time with their cats, horseback riding, or spending time outdoors.

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