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El Paso woman found after getting separated from husband on Franklin Mountains

El Paso woman found after getting separated from husband on Franklin Mountains

By: Ruben Veloz

EL PASO, Texas--A woman and her husband are reunited early Monday morning after she got lost on Franklin Mountains overnight.

The search ended Monday morning after rescuers found her with nothing but fitness clothes on.

"Embarrassing," is how the northeast El Paso woman described her ordeal after she was rescued by the El Paso's Combined Search and Rescue Team.

The search began after 6 p.m. Sunday, and ended just after 2 a.m. Monday, at a residential neighborhood on
Pinehurst Road and Thunderbird Drive west of the mountain.

The hiker made contact with the COMSAR team via cellphone as 25 members responded to the scene.

A department of public safety helicopter was also called in to help with the rescue.

The woman agreed to talk about her ordeal with KFOX14 only if we agreed not to say her name.

"I just lost sight of them I mean I tried to stay on the trail, but you know with dusk, coming and I just wasn't able to find the trail again," said the woman who wanted to remain anonymous.

The woman and her husband had just moved to El Paso from Austin 2 months ago, and are said to be experienced hikers.

This was their first time hiking on the mountain and they didn't know the trails.

The woman tells KFOX14 all she could do was crouch down, and wrap her arms around her knees to stay warm.

"My cellphone was dead and, they were yelling and um, I was answering them. They had lights and when I would see their lights, I would yell to them that their lights were coming at me."

Rescue crews had to use a helicopter from Border Patrol, and night vision goggles to find her.

"There is a couple of landmarks that helped us find her, and that's what assisted us in expediting the location of her whereabouts," said Kris Menendez, captain of the search and rescue team.

After 8 hours of being in the cold night all by herself, search and rescue crews were able to bring her down, and reunite with her husband.

"I'm glad I am safe, I won't do that again I will stay on the trail."

Firefighters said rescue could have been avoided if the hikers stayed on the trail.

Even if you are an experienced hiker, they advise hikers to plan accordingly, bring lots of water and food, and let someone else know where you are going in case you do get lost, especially if you plan on hiking alone.

 

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