Actor Julian Sands, 65, is missing in ‘extremely dangerous’ Californian mountain range

In Hiking


Julian Sands, the British star of Oscar-nominated films including A Room With A View, has been missing for almost a week in an ‘extremely dangerous’ Californian mountain range where two hikers have died in recent weeks, police have revealed. 

Sands, 65, was reported missing by his family at around 7.30pm on Friday after disappearing during a trek in the Mount Baldy area of California’s San Gabriel Mountains – where two hikers have died in recent weeks.

Officers attempted a ground search on Saturday for the star but had to abandon it as a storm swept in, and it has not bee safe enough to restart it since. 

A separate search is also ongoing for another hiker, California resident Bob Gregory, in the Crystal Lake area of the mountain range.

A spokesperson for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said: ‘On Friday at about 7.30pm, a hiker identified as 65-year-old Julian Sands of North Hollywood, was reported missing in the Baldy Bowl area of Mt. Baldy. 

Sands, 65, was reported missing by his family at around 7.30pm on Friday after disappearing in the dangerous mountain range. He is pictured in a recent image released by his family to police to aid the search

Sands, 65, was reported missing by his family at around 7.30pm on Friday after disappearing in the dangerous mountain range. He is pictured in a recent image released by his family to police to aid the search

The San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department says winter weather on Mt Baldy can make for 'dangerous conditions' and has urged hikers to think twice before traversing the area

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department says winter weather on Mt Baldy can make for ‘dangerous conditions’ and has urged hikers to think twice before traversing the area

Two hikers die on Mount Baldy in four weeks amid ‘extremely dangerous’ conditions

Two people have died in recent days while while attempting to scale the same mountainous area – one of the most popular trails in Los Angeles.

Crystal Paula Gonzalez, a mother-of-four described as ‘the dancing hiking queen’, is understood to have slipped and plunged 700ft down the Baldy Bowl.

A helicopter was immediately dispatched, and soon found Gonzalez ‘down on a steep and icy hillside, surrounded by numerous helpful hikers assisting in any way they could,’ according to an incident report.

On December 28, Jarret Choi, 43, from LA, was hiking the Ice House Canyon trail when he fell near the Ice House Saddle ridge line.

He was found two days later, after a search hampered by extreme weather conditions.

And on December 17, four people had to be rescued by helicopter from the mountain after icy conditions made it impossible to move. 

‘Search and Rescue crews responded and began a search. Due to trail conditions and the risk of avalanche, the ground crews were pulled off the mountain on Saturday evening. 

‘However, we continue to search by helicopter and drones when weather permits. We will schedule another ground search when the weather improves, and it is safe for our ground crews.’

Anxious friends and former colleagues of Sands, who also starred in supernatural horror Warlock, have taken to social media to send their well-wishes as the search continues. 

Film producer Cassian Elwes, brother of Robin Hood star Cary and a family friend of Sands, said: ‘I’ve known since Friday that my friend Julian Sands has been missing on mt baldy. 

‘I’m devastated. A very close family friend who was an adventurer in everything he did. I’ve said many prayers.’

Screenwriter Brian Lynch, whose credits include Secret Life of Pets and Minions, added: ‘Oh no! I love Julian Sands! I hope he is found ASAP.’

American actress and dancer Melanie Kinnaman also wrote: ‘Our friend Julian Sands has been missing from a hiking trip in the mountains of Southern California for nearly one week. 

‘There is an active search for him in the Mt Baldy area. Please send prayers for his safe return.’

Meanwhile, the sheriff’s department has warned that ‘severe weather on the mountain has been difficult’ and air resources are limited, while its search and rescue team has been called out to 14 incidents in the last four weeks alone.

It urged hikers to think twice before walking the trails amid ‘extremely dangerous’ conditions.

British actor and 'A Room with a View' star Julian Sands, 65, has been named as one of two missing hikers in California's San Gabriel Mountains. He's pictured here in 2020

 British actor and ‘A Room with a View’ star Julian Sands, 65, has been named as one of two missing hikers in California’s San Gabriel Mountains. He’s pictured here in 2020

A warning sign at the mountainous range amid 'extremely dangerous' conditions that have led to the deaths of two hikers in recent weeks

A warning sign at the mountainous range amid ‘extremely dangerous’ conditions that have led to the deaths of two hikers in recent weeks

Sands pictured with co-star Helena Bonham Carter on the set of A Room With A View in 1986

Sands pictured with co-star Helena Bonham Carter on the set of A Room With A View in 1986

Sands is known for his roles in several films, including the 1985 feature 'A Room with a View,' 'Warlock,' and 'Leaving Las Vegas'

Sands is known for his roles in several films, including the 1985 feature ‘A Room with a View,’ ‘Warlock,’ and ‘Leaving Las Vegas’

It comes as two people have died in recent days while while attempting to scale the same mountainous area – one of the most popular trails in Los Angeles.

Crystal Paula Gonzalez, a mother-of-four described as ‘the dancing hiking queen’, is understood to have slipped and plunged 700ft down the Baldy Bowl.

A helicopter was immediately dispatched, and soon found Gonzalez ‘down on a steep and icy hillside, surrounded by numerous helpful hikers assisting in any way they could,’ according to an incident report.

On December 28, Jarret Choi, 43, from LA, was hiking the Ice House Canyon trail when he fell near the Ice House Saddle ridge line.

He was found two days later, after a search hampered by extreme weather conditions.

And on December 17, four people had to be rescued by helicopter from the mountain after icy conditions made it impossible to move.

Meanwhile, the Sherrif department warning said: ‘Over the last four weeks, San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue (SAR) Teams have responded to 14 rescue missions on Mt Baldy and in the surrounding area. 

‘These rescue missions have been for lost, stranded and/or injured hikers. Unfortunately, during these past 4 weeks, two hikers did not survive after falling and injuring themselves.

Sands And Helena Bonham carter during filming for the 1985 romantic film A Room With A View

Sands And Helena Bonham carter during filming for the 1985 romantic film A Room With A View

Sands pictured alongside Denholm Elliott during filming for the popular movie, which received universal acclaim

Sands pictured alongside Denholm Elliott during filming for the popular movie, which received universal acclaim

It is currently unclear why Sands was in the area and if he had been hiking alone or with another person

It is currently unclear why Sands was in the area and if he had been hiking alone or with another person

‘Please know the current conditions on Mt Baldy are adverse and extremely dangerous. Due to the high winds, the snow has turned to ice making hiking extremely dangerous. 

‘Sheriff’s Search and Rescue efforts are often hampered by poor weather along with dangerous avalanche conditions. The recent storms that brought the snow and ice conditions are not favorable for hikers, even those that feel they have a high level of experience.’

Sands is best known for his roles in several films, including the 1985 feature ‘A Room with a View,’ ‘Warlock,’ and ‘Leaving Las Vegas.’

It is unclear why Sands was in the area and if he had been hiking alone or with another person.

A father-of-three, Sands has been married twice.

His first marriage, from 1984 to 1987, was to journalist Sarah Sands, who went on to edit publications including the Sunday Telegraph and London’s Evening Standard, and BBC Radio 4’s influential Today programme. The couple have a son, Henry.

The actor also has two daughters with the journalist Evgenia Citkowitz, who he married in 1990.

Meanwhile, a separate search is ongoing for another hiker, Bob Gregory of Hawthorne, in the Crystal Lake area of the mountain range.

Gregory’s family told the outlet he went missing on Monday and that they are ‘distraught’ and ‘fear he may have hurt himself and fallen.’

Gonzalez, a mother of four from Covina, was passionate about hiking, mountain biking and being outdoors

Gonzalez, a mother of four from Covina, was passionate about hiking, mountain biking and being outdoors

The treacherous conditions of the San Bernardino Mountains have meant that search and rescue efforts have been 'hampered by poor weather' along with the likelihood of 'dangerous avalanche conditions'

The treacherous conditions of the San Bernardino Mountains have meant that search and rescue efforts have been ‘hampered by poor weather’ along with the likelihood of ‘dangerous avalanche conditions’

His loved one’s added that police are in the process of tracing his cell phone, while search teams have combed the area on the ground and from the air on Tuesday.

The Sheriff’s Department has pleaded with visitors to follow simple tips to stay safe. 

These include: ‘Following all posted warning signs, looking at weather conditions (both current and forecasted) for the area, making sure you have proper gear, training and are properly prepared for alpine conditions (crampons, ice axe, proper clothing), taking a hiking partner, taking a tracking or GPS device such as a SPOT Device or INREACH Device, making sure all cell phone’s are fully charged and to bring a charged extra power pack for it.’

They have also told visitors to let someone know where and when they are going, what time they will be back and ‘most importantly’ not to go if there is any hesitation about the terrain.



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