On Tuesday, August 20, at around 22:30, SAR teams and Inyo County Sheriff’s Deputies began searching for an experienced local hiker and former team member who had not returned from a day hike to Wheeler Peak. The night searchers cleared the trail to Tamarack Lakes and the Sand Canyon road from Swall Meadows to Tamarack Bench. On Wednesday the search continued with aerial support from a CHP helicopter, but the subject was not located. Teams from China Lake Mountain Rescue Group and Mono SAR joined Inyo SAR on Thursday for an intensive search of the Wheeler Ridge area. Late that afternoon the subject was located deceased, having sustained a fall of approximately 30 feet a short distance from the summit of Wheeler Peak. Signs of major rockfall were evident in the area and may have played a part in the accident.
We are deeply saddened by the loss of our former teammate, and our sympathies go out to his family and friends. Many thanks to all those who helped with the search effort.
Please be safe out there.