Camarillo Hikers have been found

On Saturday, 02/06/16, at about 10:30 p.m., the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office responded to a mutual aid request from the Santa Paula Police Department regarding overdue hikers. Patrick Gardner and his five year old son, were hiking in the area of Sycamore Canyon Campground near the Pacific Coast Highway. Gardner and his son became disoriented to their location and were forced to stay overnight in the area of Pacific View Drive and Deer Creek Road which is located outside of the California State Park.

Patrol resources located Gardner’s vehicle in the day use area of the parking lot at the Sycamore Canyon Campground. The Sheriff’s Aviation unit conducted a search of the area using night vision googles and Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) with negative results. This prompted the activation of the East Valley Search and Rescue Team to conduct a ground search of the area. Additional resources from the Fillmore Search and Rescue Team, K-9 Search and Rescue, Sheriff’s Mounted Posse, and the Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services were also activated to aid in locating Gardner and his son.

On Sunday 02/07/16, at about 9:00 a.m., Gardner and his son walked out of the search area with minor cuts and scratches but were in good health and spirits. After speaking to Gardner it was determined he and his son became lost sometime after sunset. Gardner and his son found refuge in an unoccupied dwelling east of the Sycamore Canyon Campground.
The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office would like to remind anyone enjoying the back county to be prepared for even the easiest of hikes. The “Ten Essentials” to take when hiking are Map, GPS, Sunglasses and Sunscreen, Extra Clothing, Flashlight, First-Aid Supplies, Fire Starter, Matches, Knife, and Extra Food and Water. Also file a hiking plan with someone who will be able to contact rescue resources in the event you do not return at your planned time. A hiking plan can be found at


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