POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Jul 23, 2011
The Fire Department's helicopter on Friday morning airlifted two hikers who were forced to spend the night on a ridge in the Koolau Mountains in Pacific Palisades after they left Manana Trail and got lost.
The two men in their 20s were flown to a landing zone on Waimano Home Road near Pearl City High School around 9:45 a.m.
Capt. Terry Seelig, Honolulu Fire Department spokesman, said the air rescue had to be done in two phases. The hikers and Fire Department rescue personnel had to be first taken off the ridge where the two men spent the night and airlifted to a flatter area in the Koolaus where it would be safer to unload them and then flown in a separate trip to the Waimano Home Road landing zone.
He said the two men did not need medical attention. "They are just hungry and tired."
Seelig said the two men called for help just after 5 p.m. Thursday after they found themselves stranded on the ridge after veering off the 3-mile Manana Trail.
Seelig said after reaching Waimano Falls, instead of backtracking, the men decided to hike down the windward side of the mountain and reached a point where they couldn't go farther down or climb back up.
Seelig said two firefighters spent the night in the mountains and reached the two hikers at about 8:15 Friday morning.
Seelig said the ridge line, at about 1,800 feet elevation, was covered by mist and clouds at 8:30 a.m. Friday.