It took three Madera County Sheriff’s deputies and five search and rescue volunteers nearly six hours to rescue four people Monday night who found themselves stranded in the wilderness after veering off a designated trail while riding their off-highway vehicles (OHVs).
The group — three on dirt bikes and one riding a sport all-terrain vehicle — entered the wilderness off Roads 222 and 274 in North Fork, north of Putney Ranch Camp, at nearly 3,000 feet elevation, according to Sheriff’s spokeswoman Erica Stuart.
Nathan Kelly Brown, 37, of North Fork, Jacob Southers, 42, of Clovis, and two juveniles found themselves in steep terrain and above their riding skill level, Stuart said.
In an attempt to get out, they did what is referred to as “bushwhacking,” or blazing their own trail. But that only got them further into the mountainous region and way off course, Stuart said...