3 hikers severely injured in fall in Red River Gorge

Three hikers were rescued early Sunday after falling nearly 50 feet in the Red River Gorge in Menifee County.

The hikers suffered severe injuries, including head injuries and possibly broken bones, and were taken to area hospitals, said John May, assistant chief of the Wolfe County Search and Rescue Team. May said the identities of the hikers were not released.

About 10 people were hiking late Saturday when three members of the party fell off a rocky outcrop in the Douglas Trail area. May said rain had made the outcrop very slick. He also said alcohol was involved.

It took 35 volunteer search and rescue team members from Wolfe, Powell and Menifee counties four hours to locate and rescue the hikers because members of the party were unclear where they were in the gorge, May said. Two of the hikers were partially in the Red River when rescuers arrived, he said.

It was a busy weekend for search and rescue teams in the Red River Gorge. On Friday night, Wolfe County Search and Rescue saved a dog that had been stranded on a cliff for several days. May said the owner of the dog was found and reunited with his pet.