(MOLALLA, Ore.) — Two West Linn teenagers who went missing on Saturday while on a hike in southeast Molalla, Ore., have been found safe, rescuers reported Monday.
Jackson Chandler, 17, and 16-year-old Bradley Nelson went on a day hike in the Table Rock Wilderness area. When they did not return, their parents called Clackamas County Search and Rescue, who’d called on the the Oregon Army National Guard to help in the search for the missing high school students.
A Clackamas County Sheriff’s office spokesperson said the two teenagers did not need medical attention when they were found, reported ABC affiliate station KATU in Portland.
Once there was a break in the rain, the Oregon Army National Guard flew out a helicopter to locate the hikers “from the air,” said spokesman Deputy Nate Thompson, who’d deployed 50 searchers in the area.
Chandler and Nelson both go to West Linn High School. They are active Eagle Scouts and are experienced and trained hikers. But constant rain, rough terrain and the possibility that they were stranded in the middle of the wilderness were a cause for concern once they did not return from their hike.
“It was very unlike them not to return from their hikes. This is why their families reported them missing,” Thompson said.
Chandler and Nelson did not contact anyone for help once they set out on the hike. “The last time anyone heard from them were their parents before they took off for their hike. They didn’t text or call,” said Thompson.
West Linn High School, where Chandler is a senior and Nelson a junior, had been preparing an administrative meeting to update school staff and students on the status of the rescue efforts.
Lou Bailey, principal of West Linn High, told ABC News that many of Jackson and Bradley’s friends had gathered at the rescue scene with their families to show support.
The school could not help out in the rescue because the public is not allowed in the area where the pair had been hiking, as it’s very treacherous, Bailey said.
Search crews had made some progress in their pursuit after they found the hikers’ truck on Sunday afternoon. “It was locked and the boys were not inside,” Thompson said.
Attempts to reach the parents of Chandler and Nelson by ABC News were not successful.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Natalia Hepworth, EastIdahoNews.com
Stephan Rockefeller, EastIdahoNews.com