Missing hiker found

The search for Nick Goldman came to a successful end late Wednesday night when Madera County Sheriff’s Department Search & Rescue crews found him near the Quartz Mountain Trailhead. He is in stable condition.

Sheriff John Anderson launched a search for the 76-year-old North Fork resident and former owner of Outback Materials, after he failed to return from a cross-country hike to Chiquito Lake in the Sierra National Forest.

Anderson wishes to thank the tremendous support during the recent Search & Rescue mission in the Sierra National Forest.

The joint operation (launched shortly after 8 a.m. Wednesday), was carried out by personnel from the Madera County Sheriff’s Office, Yosemite National Park and the California Highway Patrol including: Five Madera County sheriff deputies, 12 Search & Rescue Team volunteers, two K-9 search teams (YODOGS) from Yosemite National Park, Yosemite National Park Mounted Rangers, and the CHP H-40 helicopter, which not only assisted in the search, but airlifted the Goldman to Batterson Station in Oakhurst.

Had rescue crews not found Goldman last night, another six search teams from Yosemite National park, and Air National Guard personnel (offering a Black Hawk) were prepared to assist in the search beginning at dawn today.

Goldman is reported to be in good condition, was located within Yosemite National Park, at an elevation of 8,000 feet. Crews were able to find him thanks to a GPS signal. After receiving the coordinates, search crews formed a grid search, fanned out, and shortly before 11 p.m. Wednesday night made contact.

Unable to extract him in pitch back darkness, Five Search & Rescue personnel stayed with the hiker over night. Once hoisted out safely, Goldman’s five-man rescue team hiked out of the wilderness.

The county Search & Rescue Team currently has about 80 volunteers. The nationally certified team trains year around, and conducts both rescue and recovery missions throughout the year.

Anyone who may be interested in learning more about the Search & Rescue Team should call Sergeant Jim Bernardi, (559) 642-3201.