Crews recover body of hiker who fell to death

SAN JOSE, Calif.

A rocky creek bed is one reason it took two days for workers to recover the body of the hiker who fell at least a hundred feet to his death.

The San Jose Fire Department called in the volunteer search and rescue squad after the middle-aged man was reported missing Saturday evening. His body was discovered on Sunday at the bottom of a ravine.

Boulders, slippery footing and other hazards posed a challenge to workers. The operation was so difficult that the rescue team decided to use ropes to hoist the man's body up out of the ravine, instead of carrying it back on foot.

It's a technique police say was used nearly 20 years ago to rescue a man who was stranded in the same spot, alive but injured.

The terrain is steep and rough, and park rangers say the man fell from an area off the trail that was closed to the public.

"The rangers have told me that there are an awful lot of signs back there, that people are ignoring them and going into these closed areas," said one of the individuals involved in the recovery effort.

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