PMR Assists in Evacuation of Injured Mt Adams Climber
Sunday, July 13, 2003
 
Early Sunday morning, a team from Portland Mountain Rescue helped several other rescue groups evacuate an injured climber from Mount Adams in SW Washington.
 
A 30-year old woman from Yakima, Washington had seriously injured her ankle on Saturday afternoon and could not make it out on her own power.  She was descending the 12,276-foot Cascade Range volcano near the 10,500-foot mark on the mountain when she caught a crampon in the snow during a glissade (sliding down the mountain).
 
Bystanders and climbers from her own party helped carry her down to the plateau known as the Lunch Counter at 9,300 feet above sea level.  Overnight, a group of experienced mountaineers from the Portland area climbing club The Mazamas treated the subject for shock while waiting for rescue crews to arrive.
 
At 5:00 AM, teams from PMR, Central Washington Mountain Rescue, Tacoma Mountain Rescue, Seattle Mountain Rescue, Yakima County Search and Rescue, Klickitat County Search and Rescue and the USDA Forest Service began ascending from the Cold Springs trailhead at 5,600 feet to the subject's location at the Lunch Counter.  By 9:00 AM, the patient had been evaluated and packaged in a rescue litter and was in the process of being brought to safety.
 
The injured climber was lowered over the Crescent Glacier and carried down the South Climb trail back to the trailhead.  From there, she was transported in an ambulance to a Yakima area hospital.  Her outlook is excellent.
 
Glissading is a popular method of descent on Cascade Range volcanoes, but it can be dangerous without proper technique.  PMR encourages all climbers to understand the risks of sliding down the mountain at a high rate of speed.  Wearing crampons during a glissade is one of the most common cause of mountaineering injuries and is a dangerous practice.  Do not wear crampons while glissading!
 
Note:  Less than 3 hours after being called out for this mission, PMR was activated a second time to assist with an evacuation on nearby Mount St. Helens.  Click here for that story.