On Saturday, August 18, 2018, the Inyo County Sheriff’s Office was notified by Interagency Dispatch Center in Bishop of a deceased male subject on the northeast face of Middle Palisades Peak, California. The third hand reporting party described the area as the “Red Rock Route” at approximately 12,900”.
On Sunday, August 19 two Inyo County Search and Rescue volunteers began walking to the area from the Palisades Glacier Trail Head. Helicopter H80 from CHP – Inland Division Air Operations was also requested.
As resources were responding, a caller from Indiana contacted Sheriff’s Dispatch to report her husband as overdue from a hike to the Middle Palisades Glacier area; the 61-year-old male started his hike on Friday, August 17 to Middle Palisades Glacier. In the late afternoon of the 18th, he texted his wife in Indiana saying he was behind and may need to camp on the trail. He also advised his wife that he should be fine to complete the hike on Saturday and not to call for assistance until very late Saturday if it was needed.
At approximately 7:15 am on Sunday, a second report was received by Sheriff’s Dispatch from another hiking party advising of a deceased male subject in the area.
Shortly after 1:00 pm H80 arrived in the area and was able to locate the victim. H80 met with the Inyo SAR members on the hiking trail and hoisted one of them to the victim. The second SAR member was able to access the scene on their own. The male victim was packaged and hoisted from the scene and flown to Bishop Airport. The victim was turned over to the Inyo County Coroner’s Office for further investigation.
The identity of the victim and cause of death is pending from the Coroner’s Office. The Inyo County Sheriff’s Department wishes to thank the Inyo County Search and Rescue members and the crew of H80 for their assistance in this mission.