More searchers, dogs join hunt in Orange County for 2 missing hikers

Orange County Lost Hikers

Courtesy Orange County Sheriff's Department

Photos of Nicholas Cendoya, 19, (left) and Kyndall Jack, 18, of Costa Mesa. Deputies are searching for the couple in Trabuco Canyon in unicorporated south Orange County.

Two Costa Mesa teens remain missing after getting lost while hiking Sunday, and Orange County Sheriff’s deputies say they are getting new help from other agencies as they continue searching in the Cleveland National Forest. 

Crews continued searching Tuesday in the Trabuco Canyon area of southeast Orange County. They’re seeking Nicholas Cendoya, 19, and Kyndall Jack, 18, both from Costa Mesa, who called Sunday night to say they were lost, officials said.

Gail Krause with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department said the additional resources include more searchers on foot and more search dogs.  

Krause said Riverside is one of the counties offering support.  

Dozens of searchers, a cave rescue team, horses and bloodhounds are combing an area of heavy brush near Trabuco Creek Road.  The young man and woman haven’t turned up since they called to say they were lost … and then their cell phone battery died.

“When we spoke with the hikers on Sunday night, we got conflicting information about which trail they were on," Krause said. "There’s a myriad of trails, so that’s what’s when difficult about this search.” 

The Costa Mesa teens told officials they were lost about a mile from their car, which officials found parked at Holy Jim Canyon.  

Search leaders say the missing teens are not experienced hikers. They’re asking people who might have any information to call the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.

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