Two Hikers Rescued Near Lizards Mouth
Source: Santa Barbara County Search & Rescue
[Wednesday] evening shortly after 8pm, the Santa Barbara County Emergency Dispatch Center received a call from two lost hikers, a male and female in their early 20’s in the mountains above Goleta, CA.
The hikers had set out to hike around the Lizards Mouth area and became lost as the sun was setting. Team members were paged out for a search and began around 8:45 pm after arriving on scene to where the subjects had parked their vehicle at the trailhead. It was determined based on the GPS coordinates that had been pulled from the 911 call that the subjects were well below the popular hiking area in terrain that was very inaccessible and dense with brush.
Team members developed a plan to get a first team to the subjects as quickly as possible as they were starting to get cold from the cool mountain breeze. Team members made it to the subjects around 11 pm after a couple hours of busting through dense brush and navigating large boulder fields that can create a high-risk environment for team members in the dark even with high intensity headlamps and flashlights.
The subjects were evaluated by SBCSAR EMT members for any medical concerns and determined to be uninjured. The subjects were given water which they had run out of earlier, jackets to become warmer and protect themselves during the extraction, and headlamps for their safety on the hike out of the area. Team members were provided map/topography data from the incident operations manager and devised a plan to hike out by traversing along the 2500’ level to an old trail that was heavily overgrown to meet up with another trail to the East of the subjects location that would lead the subjects and team members out of the area and back up to West Camino Cielo and to the team and subject vehicles. The incident was complete just before 2 am Wednesday morning.
SBCSAR would like to take the opportunity to remind the recreating public to always take the essentials when going hiking, even if it is thought to be short in duration as plans can change. Some essentials include but are not limited to the following: phone with ample battery, filled water bottle, whistle, map, and appropriate clothing.