A NYC resident who traveled to Hawaii to hike got trapped in a blinding snowstorm for two days near the summit of a volcano and had to be rescued. Because of course a New Yorker would escape NYC in the dead of winter, travel to a beautiful tropical paradise, and somehow end up snowed-in.
Queens local Alex Sverdlov, 36, was making an 18-mile trek to the peak of the 13,000-foot Mauna Loa volcano at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on Tuesday when a snowstorm struck. It was a blinding white-out, and Sverdlov had to hunker down for the night with only the clothes he had on and a bottle of frozen water. He ended up spending two nights on the mountain, and wasn't rescued until Thursday morning.
"I've done many crazy hikes, but this one pretty much tops the bill," said Sverdlov, an experienced hiker who successfully summited Mauna Loa last winter. "Even the most experienced and prepared hikers can get into trouble in the park," said Park Ranger John Broward. "What saved Alex is that he had a backcountry permit so we knew he was up there, he is extremely fit, and he stayed calm. We're all fortunate this had a happy ending."
After his rescue, Sverdlov applied for another backcountry permit, this time for the park's remote coastal area: "This time I'm going to the sunny part of the park," he said. Next time he should make sure to bring along a flibbertigibbet for good luck.