Surfer rescued on cliff near PacificaBy Joshua Melvin
A surfer who became trapped on a remote stretch of rocky shoreline Monday morning near Gray Whale Cove State Beach in Pacifica was lifted to safety by a United States Coast Guard helicopter, authorities said.
The man was surfing with two companions when a rip current pulled the group away from the beach at about 9:30 a.m., said Lt. Ray Lunny of the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office. All of the surfers were in their early 20s and from either the Peninsula or San Francisco.
Two of the men were able to break free of the current and get back to the beach, but a third was dragged a few hundred yards south to a rock outcropping. He climbed 30 feet to the top of the jagged rock, but eventually got stuck.
"He couldn't get any further up or down," said Lunny.
Authorities tried to get to the man using a cliff rescue team, but they couldn't reach him and, ultimately, the helicopter was called in, said Lt. j.g. Jeremy Pichette of the Coast Guard.
Crews in the helicopter picked up the stranded man and dropped him off on the beach, where emergency personnel waited. No injuries were reported for the man or his companions, Lunny said.
"It's a dangerous area," said Lunny. "These guys were fortunate. Others may not have been as lucky."
Copyright ©2010 San Mateo County Times. Published 06/15/2010.