Search for missing hikers on Mount Baldy continues for 3rd day

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Tuesday, April 9, 2019
Mount Baldy search for missing hikers enters third day
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Gabrielle Wallace, 31, of Rancho Cucamonga and Eric Desplinter, 33, of Chino Hills went missing after going for a hike on Mount Baldy on Saturday, April 6, 2019.

MOUNT BALDY, Calif. (KABC) -- Search and rescue crews returned to Mount Baldy Tuesday to resume efforts to find a pair of hikers who have been missing since Saturday.

Eric Desplinter, 33, of Chino Hills and Gabrielle Wallace, 31, of Rancho Cucamonga were with a group of four people who went hiking on Mount Baldy Saturday afternoon.

Two in the group turned back about halfway through the hike, but Desplinter and Wallace decided to continue on toward Cucamonga Peak. When they didn't return that evening, a search effort was launched.

They are experienced hikers carrying equipment such as spiked shoes and ice picks, so authorities remain hopeful about their survival on the mountain.

"People can survive for weeks without food," said Sgt. Randy Naquin with the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department. "There's plenty of water up there. They are experienced hikers. So we're definitely in hopes that were going to go out there and definitely find them."

While temperatures on the mountain are cold, they are not as bad as they might be during the peak of winter. During the daytime, temperatures were in the 60s and 70s. At the night the lowest they reached was in the 30s.

Searchers have covered most of the trail where the two were believed to have gone. There are concerns they may have fallen over the side.

Other hikers in the area say conditions are rather icy and dangerous.

At least a dozen members of search crews are on the mountain searching on the ground and by helicopter. Family and friends have also gathered in the area awaiting word.