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Rescued Hiker Describes Hallucinations, Animal Attack, Eating Rocks

An 18-year-old woman rescued from Trabuco Canyon recounts the harrowing ordeal that nearly killed her and a friend. Kyndall Jack says she hopes to thank her rescuers in person.

An 18-year-old woman who spent four days lost in Trabuco Canyon said Monday that she recalled little about the ordeal and hallucinated much of the time.

"I thought I was in a big dream," Kyndall Jack said, sitting in a wheelchair following her discharge from UC Irvine Medical Center, where she had been recuperating since her rescue Thursday.

"The last thing I remember is fighting off the animal," Jack said, adding she couldn't tell what sort of animal had attacked her and her friend, who was rescued the night day before she was found.

After that, Jack began fading in and out of consciousness, she said.

The Costa Mesa teen recalled eating "dirt and rocks" and trying to drink water from a straw, which turned out to be a tree branch.

"Oh, and I was getting eaten by a python," Jack said, chuckling at the bizarre hallucination. "I saw animals, but they ended up being branches."

When she reconnected with 19-year-old Nicholas Cendoya, who was rescued Wednesday night, she said the two tried to figure out some of the details of their ordeal.

"We tried to figure out what was happening," she said. "But we just told each other we were in different dreams."

As for Jack's rescue on a cliffside, she just recalled "scooting down a cliff."

Jack sustained cuts and bruises on her limbs and what she described as frostbite on one hand. She showed reporters how difficult it was to move her fingers on the affected hand, which she said would take a few more weeks to heal.

The two brought a few bottles of water on their hike but no other supplies. Jack cautioned others to be more prepared than they were.

"Bring lots of water," she said, adding the duo also wished they had taken a flashlight with them.

"Just stay on the trail," Jack said. "We didn't stay on the trail and that's how we got lost."

When a lighter they had with them fizzled, they were in darkness, she said.

"It was like our first or second time hanging out," Jack said, adding, "Me and Nick are just friends."

She did not recall how the two got separated.

Jack said she had only been hiking a couple of times before.

"We wanted to touch the clouds. That's why we went up there," Jack said. "We just wanted to get to the top and we finally realized it was too dark to get to the top."

When they dialed 911 for help, "I started getting an anxiety attack and threw up," Jack said. "I just went in and out of consciousness after the 911 call."

In the hallucinatory state, Jack recalled people calling out her name, prompting her to respond, "Shut up, I'm running out of air ... I just thought it was a big joke."

Jack hoped she would soon meet with her rescuers so she could thank them in person.

A reserve sheriff's deputy who suffered head, neck and chest injuries while trying to rescue Jack has been moved out of intensive care and been upgraded to fair condition, said Gail Krause of the Orange County Sheriff's Department.

"He is in good spirits and we anticipate he will be released from the hospital this week," Krause said.

Cendoya was previously released from Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo.

- City News Service

AnastaciaPatty April 11, 2013 at 02:54 AM
The drug accusations are in fact true. They were both tested positive for ecstasy. The news media will not release this info, but I have a very reliable "uniformed" source! I have mixed feelings about this info being leaked. On one hand, I think it should remain private to protect the young kids. On another, someone needs to be made accountable for the other injuries to the volunteers and rescuers. Bills need to be paid. And an example needs to be made!!
Patunia April 11, 2013 at 06:04 AM
Most everyone I know suspects drugs were involved based on the story so hearing about the ecstasy is not surprising. They should both be held accountable. Grow up.
Lake Forest Citizen Paying Attention April 11, 2013 at 03:17 PM
Going hiking in the wilderness without proper attire or supplies, paying the price for that decision by getting really messed up, and then being lucky enough to be rescued by others before you got yourself killed does not make one a "hero". It is evidence that one is a complete fool, albeit a lucky one.
Michael Butler April 11, 2013 at 06:27 PM
LOL! Yeah, it certainly seems that way.
Michael Butler April 11, 2013 at 06:29 PM
First thing I thought of when I heard this story...NOTHING adds up, and being on some kind of hallucinogenic fills in all the blanks.
Summum Bonum April 11, 2013 at 08:56 PM
No bill will be sent to lost hikers Kyndall Jack and Nicolas Cendoya escape having to pay the cost of extensive search and rescue. http://articles.dailypilot.com/2013-04-10/news/tn-dpt-0411-hiker-bills-20130410_1_lost-hikers-trabuco-canyon-rescue-efforts So much for all your theories. Thank God we have a sound legal system and not trial by angry crowds. As for drug accusations, anyone on the inside divulging that sort of info is violating HIPAA laws, making the whole medical institution liable for lawsuits.
Summum Bonum April 11, 2013 at 09:14 PM
Most everyone except the police and medical doctors who had the most intimate knowledge of what took place. They were guilty of nothing more than naivety. God was in control the whole time, including in control of the Reserve Sheriff Deputy who fell; he will be fine. He surely had his own tests. Now instead of crucifying these poor teens, maybe we should focus on what positive can come of all this as we have joined together as a nation, even you doubters out there once you let go of the whole drug thing.
Just Me April 11, 2013 at 11:44 PM
Great, now millions of kids will think they can go screw around and "touch the clouds" with no repercussions or not being prepared based on "Gods" teachings. I would have assumed he would have taught them before they went out. And why did he make them eat dirt? Couldn't he have made it rain, help them find the river, gave them a longer battery charge in the phone? If you're right and there "is" a God, I guess he can also judge them if he finds they did cause this through willful sinning that you don't want to consider.
Just Me April 11, 2013 at 11:46 PM
And anyone denying it either 1. knows the facts of the medical testing and is divulging the info and violating HIPAA laws or 2. assuming they didn't just as we are doing the opposite. Always funny how the religious right can point fingers and quote laws but only when it suits their position on a topic.
Summum Bonum April 12, 2013 at 12:18 AM
Clever attempt "Just Me." However; it is much more likely to believe and assumed that they did not have drugs in their systems. Only any claim to the contrary , including knowledge of the proof of such a claim, could be considered a violation of HIPAA as only someone with inside knowledge could rationally state that it is known that drugs were involved. Stating that no drugs were involved is to only state the assumed. As you can see above, neither hiker is being held responsible, so it is safe to assume that there were no laws violated. Have you seen how hard police crack down on drug criminals confiscating their belongings. Nothing of the sort has happened with either hiker.
AnastaciaPatty April 13, 2013 at 01:06 AM
@Summum...no Christine Holman is not my source, I don't know anyone on this page. I am a resident in the area and have friends that are family to all 3 parties, including both Nick and Kyndalls families as well as some of those involved with the rescue. The hospital has not violated any HIPAA laws. It was a relative that offered the info, not the hospital. That's all I can say. And I do thank God that He kept both Nick and Kyndall safe and brought them home. I hope that this was an eye opening experience for them and they use it to teach others the danger of not being completely prepared for a hike in the wilderness and that there is a time and place and a responsibility that comes with the decision to do recreational drugs. This was not it. Their lack of planning and thought worried and hurt family and friends close to them, put volunteer searchers in danger, and eventually caused a serious injury with one rescuer because she tried to "scoot down a little hill". Again...my prayers are with both families, and this isn't a message meant to be a lecture on drug use, but one for those, no longer minors in age, learning to be more responsible for their actions.
Dick Jones April 24, 2013 at 08:57 PM
Wow. Summum. I think you may be one of these individuals or one of their parents. I will state a fact. YOU HAVE TO BE A MORON OR ON DRUGS TO GET LOST IN THAT CANYON. Simple as that. I would love to see the bill these two incurred that the good tax payers of Orange County now have to pay.
Summum Bonum April 24, 2013 at 09:47 PM
As for my relationship to the hikers, I was neither a friend or family member, just a member of the community who went to volunteer without judgment. I was there at the scene and participated in search and logistics in the area, but never knew any of the hikers. I think they may have just been young, inexperienced and panicked as thirst, fatigue and darkness set in. You think drugs were involved. No problem having theories as long as you present them as such and not as facts, and you provide good support for your theories. What do you really know about this story besides what you've read on the Patch. I have lots of details, more than anyone reading inaccurate, incomplete news articles would have. If you really want more information to fill in the blanks, do your research, but if you just want to snipe random insults at these lost hikers, I suggest you find a better hobby.
Dick Jones April 24, 2013 at 10:33 PM
Again, you have to be a complete moron or on drugs to get lost in that canyon. I would suggest you find a better hobby than to defend incompetent teenagers not only endangering the lives of good people (such as yourself) searching for them and costing the community exorbitant amounts of money with no consequences. I don't need to do research to "fill in the blanks." I know that canyon very well. I know, for a fact, one would either need to be a complete moron or on hallucinogenic drugs to get lost in that canyon.
Summum Bonum April 24, 2013 at 10:44 PM
I defend humans. Regardless of their alleged or theorized actions, they are still human beings and even if they were on drugs, they did not deserve a death sentence or nationwide humiliation as a form of punishment. If you're worried about tax dollars going to waste, think on a grander scale, maybe in our foreign interventions and propping up corrupt bankers. As a caring society, we allocate a certain amount of money and resources to cover for people's errors (ambulances, fire trucks, etc.). Every once it awhile, we spend a lot more, but that's all averaged in to the big picture. The volunteers risk their safety willingly and the rescuers were paid to do what they do and their level of pay takes that risk into account. Looking on the bright side, this was a nice story to unite and warm the hearts of our nation with good news before having to face the horrible news with the likes of Boston and West, TX.
Michael Butler April 24, 2013 at 10:45 PM
Well said Dick Jones, I think you about summed it up. Summum Bonum, or is it Fernando Parra? Yeah we saw that identical post for those of us following. Getting your personas mixed up? LOL!
Dick Jones April 24, 2013 at 10:56 PM
"Regardless of their alleged or theorized actions, they are still human beings and even if they were on drugs, they did not deserve a death sentence or nationwide humiliation as a form of punishment." Typical. spin the conversation. Nobody says they deserved to die or be humiliated nationally. They should however, be held accountable for their actions. Also, don't even try and spin the topic to other tragedies in the nation. Just from your argumentative tactics I'm going to assume you are a left wing liberal. They tend to change subjects and divert from the actual matter when they have nothing of substance to say. No, I'm not a right wing Republican.
Summum Bonum April 24, 2013 at 11:10 PM
Well said Dick Tracy, where's your squad car. So posting as Fernando or Sumum Bonum, what does that prove? I just early on created two separate accounts for two different city patches not realizing it was one universal system. So again, if I have 100 personas, my message is consistent and I'm not trying to mislead anyone. I just thought it would be best to post using same persona to allow readers to more easily track my postings.
Summum Bonum April 24, 2013 at 11:14 PM
Funny you should say; I'm neither right wing or left wing, I like to eat the whole bird, gizzards and all. You must be stuck in on the fictitious separation of people into camps when we all have much more in common than separates us.
Peter Schelden (Editor) April 24, 2013 at 11:16 PM
Folks, let's calm down and not attack one another. Police have stated they're not going to press charges, and there's been no evidence of drug use in the case of the two hikers.
Summum Bonum April 24, 2013 at 11:33 PM
I didn't try to distract anyone. I know that the population at large is moved by these sorts of large newsworthy events. I personally think many unimportant events are overhyped while other more important events are underreported. I am not as moved nor do I get caught up in the hype.The reality is; however, that these sort of news stories, whether I like it or not, actually become real emotional assets to our nation (just like other forms of entertainment like movies, video games and amusement parks) that we can benefit from, especially when packaged up with a pretty bow and sold to us by mainstream media. I was in fact quite disappointed by the way the story was reported on and over dramatized by mainstream media, often making it seem like the victims were the heroes who through Jesus repented and came to see the errors in their ways. Although truth of what really happened out there may have been sacrificed, I think we as a race are not always concerned by trivial truths and are more concerned about how things make us feel. This whole experience as a whole made the country feel better. Scary actually when I think about it, but like it or not, that's how it is. As for holding them accountable, what would you propose, making them debt slaves for 30 years to pay back for the injuries and expenses? Should we bill people for paramedics when they abuse their health and collapse with a heart attack or charge them for firefighters when they fail to replace their old wiring?
Dick Jones April 24, 2013 at 11:34 PM
I know. The police stated they would not press charges. There could never be anything swept under the rug in Orange County. Never. I wonder if is has anything to do with the fact this Cendoya family appears to be fairly wealthy. I also wonder what kind of contributions this family makes or has made to prominent public figures in the area. Hmmmm.
Summum Bonum April 24, 2013 at 11:51 PM
And we've learned from events from OJ Simpson to 9-11 Commission that neither science nor common sense are pertinent. We just go with what makes us all feel good as a nation and leave it at that. We are all too easily moved by politics, religion, patriotism, sensationalism, etc. Police for whatever reason decided either that they had already been sufficiently punished or maybe they liked the way the story unfolded and enjoyed having the spotlight shining on them and turning this into some sort of criminal investigation would have muddied up the waters. I have seen poor minorities slammed on the ground and beaten up by police for simple possession, yet these popular middle to upper-middle class attractive kids were almost made out to be national heroes. I saw no real critical questions by main stream media about key points in the investigation, but then it seemed that to a large degree, the public did not demand the truth. Such a crazy world we live in.
Michael Butler May 02, 2013 at 03:09 AM
Well well well. What do you know? Nicolas Cendoya was charged with possession of methamphetamine http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/local/orange_county&id=9087233. I think someone owes us an apology, don't you? ;) "The Orange County District Attorney's Office said methamphetamine was found on or around March 31 in Cendoya's parked car in the Cleveland National Forest." My guess is that the meth was just a minor component...hallucinogenics played the primary role...
AnastaciaPatty May 02, 2013 at 03:35 AM
@Summum.....no more rumors or speculation necessary.... "A teenage hiker who was rescued after going missing in Trabuco Canyon in March was charged Wednesday with possession of methamphetamine. Nicolas Cendoya, 19, and his friend, 18-year-old Kyndall Jack, went missing while hiking on Easter Sunday. They were each found separately several days later. The Orange County District Attorney's Office said methamphetamine was found on or around March 31 in Cendoya's parked car in the Cleveland National Forest."
Summum Bonum May 02, 2013 at 03:47 AM
Hello, don't we still live in US of A where people are innocent until proven guilty? These are only charges, we'll have to wait for the trial to see whether the charges will stick. Even if they do, it's a whole other matter to show that he was under the influence when he went missing. And even if he was, so what, he called out to Jesus and Jesus answered. He is the ultimate judge and He oversaw Nicholas' case before Him and granted him another chance at life. Who are we to intervene? These people were missing for days and the car was left abandoned for at least one night. Don't you think there's some chance that these allegedly found drugs were planted by someone, maybe by the OC Sheriff trying to recover the future costs of the search and rescue efforts.
Michael Butler May 02, 2013 at 04:15 AM
LOL! Summum Bonum...you're kidding right? You've taken an unnatural interest in defending these two, i think you're closer than you let on, but regardless, I think the cops and the DA wouldn't go to the trouble of filing a felony charge if these kids were on the up and up. This is payback in a sense, you cause them trouble, they return the favor, this is how the "just us" system works in reality, not some fairy tale where the scales of justice are blind. Yeah, there's a presumption of innocence in this country, but it's going to cost you to prove it when you piss them off, and that's by design...you versus the virtually unlimited resources of the state. It's best to cut the losses and plead out, which I guess is what will happen here.
AnastaciaPatty May 02, 2013 at 05:00 AM
HAHAHAHAHAHA!! Now I'm convinced more than ever that Summum is one of the family members, if not Nick or Kyndall themself!!! Seriously!?!! OC Sheriff plants drugs??? Yea....cuz that was on the top of their priority list when these 2 went missing, before drugs were ever suspected!! Now who is playing the blame game...and sucks at it?!?!???!!!!!!
Peter Schelden (Editor) May 02, 2013 at 06:02 AM
Very interesting development. Police originally said nothing unusual was found in Cendoya's vehicle. Curious how the story changed... http://missionviejo.patch.com/articles/rescued-hiker-charged-with-drug-possession
Summum Bonum May 04, 2013 at 05:43 AM
Police said nothing publicly, but word was out "on the street" that something had been found though I noticed that not even the press was aware of this. I overheard a semi-professional search and rescue team leader who seemed to have inside knowledge (maybe he was an off-duty law enforcement person) make mention of drug items in his briefing to his team Wednesday morning near where Nick's car was found, though he was not very specific as to what exactly had been found.

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