British actor Julian Sands has been reported missing after hiking in the San Gabriel mountains on Friday, according to the San Bernardino county sheriff’s department.
The 65-year-old actor, known for his roles in A Room with a View, The Killing Fields, and Naked Lunch, lives in North Hollywood.
Rescue crews have been searching for a lost hiker in the Baldy Bowl area of Mt Baldy, a popular area for hikers and skiers, since a hiker was reported missing at 7pm on Friday evening, sheriff department spokesperson Nathan Campos said. Officials identified the lost hiker by name on Wednesday afternoon.
The severe winter weather across California has interfered with the search around Mt Baldy: rescue crews on the ground were “pulled off the mount on Saturday evening for their safety”, with the search continuing “by drone and helicopter when the weather permitted”, Campos said.
There is a severe avalanche risk in the area, and authorities are recommending that the public stay away from the area. “It’s extremely dangerous, and experienced hikers are having a hard time getting through there,” Campos said. As the weather clears, rescue crews are planning to resume a search on the ground, he said.
Authorities are also searching for another missing hiker, Bob Gregory, of Hawthorne, California, who was reported missing on Monday in San Gabriel mountains, ABC News reported.
Sands, who grew up in Yorkshire, has had an eclectic, decades-long career in the film industry, appearing in dozens of film and TV roles, and has lived in the Los Angeles area for years with his wife, the writer Evgenia Citkowitz. He has three children. In a 2018 interview with the Guardian, Sands talked about his fixation with mountain climbing and the importance of continuing to embrace new adventures as he aged. In another 2020 interview, he described himself as at his happiest “close to a mountain summit on a glorious cold morning”.
The closest he had previously come to death, Sands said in 2020, was “in the early 90s, in the Andes, caught in an atrocious storm above 20,000ft with three others. We were all in a very bad way. Some guys close to us perished; we were lucky.”