The pair had run out of water and were so dehydrated they were slurring speech, couldn’t hold their heads up and were extremely fatigued, fire Capt. Ted Huber said. They had to be airlifted off the mountain and taken to local hospitals.
Authorities did not identify any of the hikers rescued Saturday.
Brand Park hiking trails can be strenuous for some people, Rifino said, and some hikers often don’t drink enough fluids during their climb.
“All of those [factors] contributed to their dehydration and exhaustion,” Rifino said.
Mountain rescues at Brand Park occur several times a year, and the Fire Department has trained personnel for saving hikers from the trails.
Two hikers were airlifted in February off the Verdugo Mountains near Brand Park.
“People start off the days with taking hikes because the days are so nice and they underestimate, one, their physical condition, two, how strenuous that hike is, and three, the heat,” Rifino said. “And a lot of times they don’t bring enough water.”
The park’s trails are not easy, so hikers should be physically fit and prepared to hike the paths, said Jeff Weinstein, the city’s trails and open-space specialist.
The city’s website provides hikers with maps of trails, which include safety tips, he said.
“No. 1 is know your limitations,” Weinstein said.
More hikers have been trekking along Brand Park, the Verdugo Mountains and San Rafael Hills since the devastating damage to Deukmejian Wilderness Park during the Station fire, Weinstein said.
City officials have said Deukmejian Wilderness Park would be closed for a “very, very long time” because of the dangerous, unstable terrain.
The city’s Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department is rescheduling hiking activities that would have normally occurred at Deukmejian on a monthly basis at other open parks, Weinstein said.