John Cadiz Klemack
Five experienced hikers who were reported missing Friday had no idea a search effort was under way to find them. John Cadiz Klemack reports for the NBC4 News at Noon on Friday, April 5, 2013.
Five hikers reported lost in Eaton Canyon in Pasadena, Calif., were found safe late Friday morning and unaware a search-and-rescue effort was even in progress.
Abby Rodeo, 20, and four other hikers were found beyond the second waterfall, an elusive mountain-side destination that involves a treacherous and sometimes-deadly hike that Los Angeles County Parks Department warns visitors not to attempt.
Rodeo and her companions — who were described as experienced hikers — were in the area to practice rappelling. They stayed overnight, and when Rodeo's father visited the park Friday morning and found her car with his daughter's gear and cell phone in the trunk, he became worried and called 911.
"I started driving around looking for all the entrances to Eaton Canyon, and at 6 o'clock, I found her car here," Elvin Rodeo said.
Search teams were sent out about 8 a.m., and the group was found safe shortly before 11 a.m.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department led the rescue effort with support from its Altadena Search and Rescue, Sgt. Booker Hollis said.
The search effort comes on the heels of another high-profile rescue in in a Southern California forest. Kyndall Jack, 18, and Nicholas Cendoya, 19, were saved after a multi-day search.