2 women killed while climbing icy California mountain

A photo provided by the Mono County Sheriff's Office shows operations Tuesday to recover the bodies of two hikers who died on Red Slate Mountain in the eastern Sierra Nevada.
(Mono County Sheriff’s Office)

Authorities say two women were killed while climbing an icy canyon on California’s Red Slate Mountain.

The Mono County Sheriff’s Office says a helicopter crew spotted the bodies Monday at an elevation of about 12,000 feet. But recovery efforts were delayed a day because of high winds and steep terrain.

The Sheriff’s Office identified the climbers as 22-year-old Michelle Xue of Los Angeles and 34-year-old Jennifer Shedden of Mammoth Lakes.


Officials say the women, who were experienced and well-equipped, were probably struck by falling rocks on the peak in the Sierra above Convict Lake.

The search began after the pair didn’t return as planned on Sunday.