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Firefighters rescue 7 BYUH students lost on hiking trail

  • COURTESY KARA ISHITANI
    Views from the Crouching Lion Hike. Honolulu Fire Department Capt. James Todd urged anyone researching a hike to use sanctioned trails and rely on information from state websites.
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Firefighters rescued seven university students on Sunday who spent a night stuck in the Koolau Mountain Range above Kaaawa.

Honolulu Fire Department Capt. James Todd said seven Brigham Young University-Hawaii students, ages 18 to 20, went hiking about noon Saturday, beginning at a trailhead in Pearl City.

The students were trying to hike to the Windward side after watching a video online that showed the trail exiting on the other side of the mountain range.

The students, three women and four men, became stuck above Crouching Lion Inn, where they couldn’t go up or down and called for help about 8:45 p.m. Saturday.

Firefighters pinpointed the group’s location, but couldn’t rescue them because of darkness, and asked the group to stay in place until daylight, Todd said.

Firefighters responded on Sunday morning and rescued all 7 hikers by helicopter about 8 a.m., taking the hikers one at a time to Kualoa Regional Park. No one was hurt.

Todd said the students rode a bus to the trailhead and were planning to call a friend to pick them up when they reached the other side.

He urged anyone researching a hike to use sanctioned trails and rely on information from state websites.

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