August was a busy month for the Montrose Search & Rescue team, with several calls being followed closely by the media.
July 31 through Aug. 2
On July 31, a search began for three missing teenagers who drove from their homes in Fontana to “the mountains.” The last location of one of the teens’ cellphones was approximately nine miles north of Pasadena. The search continued on Aug. 1, and at around 5 p.m. the MSAR team stopped to investigate tire marks along the dirt berm on Angeles Crest Highway. Once they located evidence of a possible vehicle over the side, they called in Sheriff’s Air Rescue 5 to assist.
Air 5 quickly spotted the missing vehicle 555 feet over the side of the road under heavy tree canopy. Air 5 medics located the vehicle and found that all three teens were deceased. The recovery continued into the next day, Aug. 2.
A small brushfire near Buckhorn Campground had MSAR teams responding to assist in evacuating hikers and campers from the area.
MSAR was asked to assist in the recovery of the Fontana teens’ vehicle.
A car travelling along ACH observed a large dust cloud and believed a car may have gone over the side. MSAR and L.A. County Fire responded and searched the canyon, but was unable to find any evidence of a car over.
Four hikers were overdue near Switzer Falls.
Car over the side of the cliff, ACH, with two victims. None injured.
Car over side of the cliff on ACH. Unable to locate any sign of person or vehicle.
Aug. 23 – Aug. 25
Caltrans noticed skid marks from the car reported on Aug. 11. MSAR, USFS and L.A. County Fire responded. The skid marks were known from the earlier call, but USFS saw signs of brush disturbance 300 feet over and decided to check. They then discovered the vehicle belonging to Kimberly Blum over 500 feet down the ravine. She had been missing for over two years. MSAR searched the area over a three-day period assisting the coroner and the local homicide unit in recovering her remains.
Missing hiker near Chilao Campground.
Dehydrated mountain biker in the Arroyo Seco. Air 5 was directed in by MSAR and did a hoist rescue of both the hiker and his bike.
A vehicle was found abandoned around midnight on Little Tujunga Canyon Road, blocking both lanes. A welfare check was made of the registered owner, and determined that the 86-year-old man was missing from his home, and was last seen about five hours earlier in the Tarzana area. MSAR, assisted by Santa Clarita SAR and Air Rescue 5, searched the area. The man was located after wandering in the forest for several hours, and flown to a local hospital.
Montrose Search & Rescue is one of eight rescue teams in L.A. County. The team is made up of sheriff reserve deputies and volunteers who dedicate their time to help others who are lost, stranded or injured. Anyone who would like more information on becoming a member can attend a MSAR monthly meeting the first Wednesday of each month at
7:30 p.m. at the CV Sheriff Station, 4554 Briggs Ave. Follow MSAR on Facebook, its website or Twitter under @MontroseSAR.