California mountain rescuers search for British actor Julian Sands

LOS ANGELES (AFP): Rescuers battling difficult winter weather were searching Thursday for British actor Julian Sands, who went missing while hiking on a California mountain.

Sands, who shot to fame as Helena Bonham Carter´s love interest in 1985´s “Room with a View,” disappeared almost a week ago on the 10,000-foot (3,000-meter) Mount San Antonio, just outside of Los Angeles.

Deputies from the San Bernardino Sheriff´s Department began searching for him after the alarm was raised on Friday evening.

Signals from his mobile phone were received throughout the weekend, they said, giving possible clues to his whereabouts, but searches on the ground and from the air proved fruitless.

Much of California has been battered by weeks of atmospheric rivers that have brought heavy precipitation, including deep snow to mountain ranges.

“Because of avalanche risks and trail conditions, the ground crews were pulled off the mountain on Saturday evening,” San Bernardino Sheriff´s Department said Thursday.

“However, the search continues by helicopter and drones when the weather permits.

“Additional ground searches will be scheduled when the weather improves, and it is safe for our rescue crews.”

Sands, 65, is an experienced hiker who has previously described himself as happiest “close to a mountain summit on a glorious cold morning.”

In the early 1990s he hiked through the Andes mountain range, getting caught in a storm above 20,000 feet.