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April 5th, 2013
08:45 AM ET

VIDEO: Rescuers describe challenges in saving California hikers


(CNN) - On Sunday night, two teenagers called authorities pleading for help after their hike through the Santa Ana Mountains of southern California went awry.

Then their cell phones went dead - meaning that not only were they lost, but so, too, was their link to potential saviors.

Their story took a positive turn Wednesday night, when rescuers came across 19-year-old Nicholas Cendoya. But there was no sign of his hiking mate, 18-year-old Kyndall Jack. Until now.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department rescue team who saved two hikers in California talk about the challenges of locating and saving the teens.

READ MORE: California hiker found perched in rugged terrain, four days after calling for help

Filed under: Rescue
April 2nd, 2013
11:45 AM ET

Hiker rescued after six days on Mt. Hood says she's 'coming back' to complete the summit

A hiker is recovering this morning after she was stranded for six harrowing days on Oregon’s Mount Hood.

Mary Owen suffered a gash on her thigh, an injury to her right leg and frostbite on both feet after getting stranded on a mountain she climbed alone a week ago after her friends decided not to join. Heavy snow and a wrong turn and then a 40-feet fall over rocky terrain left her idly waiting for help until the National Guard rescued her this weekend.

This morning Owen joins “Starting Point” from her hospital bed in Oregon to discuss how she survived alone for six days on the mountain.

“I … made some really bad decisions,” says Owen. “I have God to thank for surviving and the prayers of my good friends and family and the work of the search and rescue crew and the National Guard” she adds.

Owen says she was able to survive by staying in one position, especially since she couldn't move either of her legs.

“I just kind of pounded out little caves in the snow to protect from the wind and rain and stuff and hunkered down in my poncho and tried to keep most of my body warm," she says. "Wasn’t a whole lot that I was doing...just kind of rationing out my food and ended up making a fire on Thursday.”

When it comes to survival Owen says it never crossed her mind that she wouldn't survive.

"There wasn’t really a moment where I thought I might not survive. There were a lot of moments where I was wondering why people weren’t looking for me and how long it would take,” she says.

As for if she'll be going back hiking anytime soon, Owen says she has to complete her goal to summit Mt. Hood.

"I actually have my sisters' promises, that they are going to try to summit with me, so I have their word on that. And I'll definitely be out in the outdoors after this point and I'm coming back for Hood, I do need to summit that mountain," she says.

Filed under: Mountain climbing • Rescue
January 2nd, 2013
08:51 AM ET

Dramatic ice rescue caught on tape; rescuer Mickey Herman helps sledders out from icy water

This morning we bring you a dramatic ice rescue caught on tape and a rescuer who took part in it. Caught on camera Christmas day, a sledder fell into an icy lake in Wrightwood, California, now closed until spring. Several people came to his aid, but fell into the ice one after another. Mickey Herman and his wife were on the shore when they witnessed this dramatic turn of events. He was able to toss a rope into the lake and help call 911. After almost 9 minutes, everyone made it out of the frozen lake and is doing well. His wife shot the video. Mickey Herman joins us live from Los Angeles this morning.

Herman explains the whole experience as it unfolded. His wife just happened to be “playing with the camera” she had gotten for Christmas and was filming when the sledder fell into the ice. “I remembered I had about a 5-foot rope under the seat of my car. I ran up to the car, got the rope, ran back down, uncoiled it, threw it out and I was coming about seven feet short from getting the rope to the guy,” Herman describes. “At that point, other people started running over the cargo strap, tying them to the rope, and they began throwing the rope. And I ran up to the top of the hill and called 911.”

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Filed under: Rescue