A 46-year-old hiker from Santa Barbara failed to finish a 40-mile hike in the Los Padres national forest.
Wesley Welch was scheduled to finish the hike on Sunday, but he and his dog never returned. Fortunately, Welch had given his family a route plan and along the way he signed trail registers, which aided the Santa Barbara search and rescue team. They located him near Fish Camp, some 38 miles into his 40 mile hike.
Deputy Doug Jones is with the Santa Barbara county sheriff’s department. Jones tells KSBY that Welch suffered from dehydration and heat exhaustion. He was flown out by helicopter. His dog, Davie, walked out on his own with some of the searchers. Jones says high temperatures caused Welch to become dehydrated and slowed his progress.
He was scheduled to finish the 40 mile hike on Sunday. He was rescued Tuesday afternoon.