Rescuers help 2 stranded brothers off mountain in American Fork Canyon

May 23, 2018, 1:22 AM | Updated: 1:22 am

AMERICAN FORK, Utah – Rescuers helped two brothers off a mountain in American Fork Canyon Tuesday, after the two began a hike in Cedar Hills late Monday and were forced to stay out overnight, because of the darkness and inability to make it back safely.

“I had been praying and praying and praying through this whole thing,” said Lasha Hartshorn, the mother of the 22-year-old man and 16-year-old boy.

Hartshorn said she was already worried when she learned her sons would try to stay out overnight, and she grew more worried Tuesday morning when the two brothers still found it difficult to return.

“I had the strongest feeling that they needed help and they needed help right now,” said Hartshorn, who had deputies from the Utah County Sheriff’s Office arriving at her house when one of her sons called again. “It just happened that my boys called at 10 o’clock and said they needed help getting down, ‘We’re not going to be able to get down ourselves.”’

Rescuers were able to determine where the brothers were and noted it was a good idea they didn’t continue any further, Sgt. Spencer Cannon said.

“It was slick and difficult, but not too far below them was a 1,200-foot, straight-down cliff drop-off,” he said.

After about two hours, searchers were able to get the two brothers off the mountain.

Cannon said the brothers weren’t prepared for the conditions they encountered, and they’re not alone.

“When people find themselves in trouble, the majority of them involve people who are not well-enough prepared for the terrain they’re encountering,” Cannon said.

Cannon encouraged all people headed out to the mountains for the Memorial Day weekend to be prepared with enough food, water and clothing in case a hike accidentally turns into an overnighter.

Hartshorn said a similar discussion would take place with all of her children.

“Prayer was amazing, but even with prayer, I don’t want to be put through that again, never again,” Hartshorn said.

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Rescuers help 2 stranded brothers off mountain in American Fork Canyon