Dec. 22, 2011: Missing ATV Riders - Randsburg, Kern County

12/22/11 , Thursday 05:00 – 18:00 Hours

P. Emerson wrapping up as the CHP copter takes off with the subject. Photo by Ian Roberts

On Sunday, 12/18/11, two men went for a ride on a two-person all-terrain vehicle. They left a motel in Randsburg around 02:30 in the morning. Their destination was a dry lake in San Bernardino County. They did not return. Over the next four days, family and friends along with local search and rescue teams search the area which is a popular off-road riding area. The area is also known for its many unmarked vertical mine shafts.

The search effort was escalated into a mutual aid operation starting Thursday, 12/22/11. Many teams from throughout the state including San Bernardino, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and Fresno counties responded. The three Ventura mountain teams responded with ATVs, motorcycles, and four-wheel drive trucks. Nine East Valley team members responded and were broken up into smaller field teams.

One of the East Valley field teams rode up to a high point to get an overview of their search area. They spotted something of interest in a deep ravine. Even though a helicopter just flew over the area, the search team worked their way down to the ravine and discovered the bodies of the subjects. It appeared that they had tumbled down a 500-foot cliff. The team assisted in the recovery operation.

See the News Article for more information.