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Air Rescue: Lost Hiker Located Above Kaheawa Wind Farm

A 24-year-old Maui man was airlifted to safety on Sunday, June 23, 2019, after becoming lost and spending the night in the mountains above the Kaheawa Wind Farm in Māʻalaea.

Maui fire officials say the man failed to meet up with his hiking partner as planned while attempting to hike towards the summit area on Saturday afternoon.

Maui Fire Services Chief Rylan Yatsushiro said the two separated from each other at 2 p.m. when the man’s hiking partner became exhausted and stopped to rest.  A 9-1-1 call was placed by the resting hiker at around 6:50 p.m., when the man failed to return.

Aerial photography file by Wendy Osher.

Because of darkness, the Maui Fire Department’s Air 1 helicopter could not be utilized at the time, and personnel used ATVs to drive up the steep utility road, then set out on foot to meet up with the caller.

Rescue personnel gathered information and hiked up very steep terrain in darkness, but suspended the search until first light the next morning, due to safety.

On Sunday morning, Rescue 10 personnel aboard Air 1 were able to locate the missing hiker on the trail, and extracted him to safety.

Fire officials say the man was in good condition with no medical attention needed.