Orange County News
Second rescued hiker describes being stranded in Trabuco Canyon
ORANGE, Calif. (KABC) -- Hiker Kyndall Jack spoke out for the first time Monday since being rescued from Trabuco Canyon after going missing for nearly five days.
Jack, 18, and her friend, 19-year-old Nick Cendoya, got lost hiking on Easter Sunday. Cendoya was found and rescued Wednesday night. Jack was rescued Thursday.
Speaking to members of the media outside UC Irvine Medical Center, Jack said she didn't remember how she and Cendoya were separated, but she did recall fighting off some kind of animal with Cendoya. She said she believes that actually happened, but couldn't be certain.
Later, hallucinations set in. She spent four days lost in the wilderness with no food or water.
"I don't remember drinking anything," Jack said. "I know I ate dirt. I tried to eat some dirt and rocks. I came to the hospital with a big mouth full of dirt and that's all I remember."
Jack is still using a wheelchair, but is expected to be released from the hospital Monday night. She sustained an injury to one hand, and her legs were scratched and bruised.
"I definitely gave up hope," she said. "There was some times I didn't think I was going to make it."
Jack also said she was "definitely hallucinating."
"My parents were in jail half the time, in my mind, and I was searching for my little sister, so that's all I remember," Jack said. "I was being eaten by a python. Like Nick saw a tiger, I was being eaten by a python half the time."
Jack said she was not sure if she'd ever go hiking again, but the experience helped her and Cendoya form a strong bond.
Cendoya was released from the hospital Sunday. He also spoke to members of the news media, saying the ordeal felt like a lucid dream and that he ate plants to survive.
The two called 911 for help the night they became lost, but the cellphone battery went dead. Cendoya said that's when he and Jack tried to find their way back down the mountain they were on, but they fell and became separated.
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