National Park Service

Families of Missing Joshua Tree Hikers Announce $10,000 Reward for Safe Return

The two California State University, Fullerton students went on a hiking trip to Joshua Tree as a birthday celebration.

The families of a young man and woman from Westminster, missing since last month after embarking on a hike in Joshua Tree National Park, announced a $10,000 reward for their safe return during a news conference Saturday.

Rachel Nguyen, 20, and Joseph Orbeso, 21, were last heard from at 6:45 a.m. July 27. Orbeso's phone last pinged at around 4 p.m. on July 27 inside the park. Their car was found at the Maze Loop trailhead, near the northern end of the park.

Search efforts have been continuous since July 28, with rescue teams from several agencies scouring the park, utilizing helicopters and canines during their search.

However, park representatives said the search efforts have been scaled back since the early days of the pair's disappearance, with the park's search and rescue teams moving from "an active, intensive search to what is known as a limited continuous search mode," according to a release from the park.

Orbeso's father, Gilbert, will provide updates on the search efforts, along with members of the National Park Service.

Anyone with information as to the pair's whereabouts was asked to contact the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department dispatch center at 909-383-5652 and ask for the detective division.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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