During the late evening PMR’s help was requested to rescue a hiker who was stranded part way down a cliff east of Multnomah Falls. The 26 year-old man had been traveling alone and off -trail when he found himself trapped in near vertical terrain unable to climb up or down. The hiker was not prepared for a night out, but he did have a cell phone and was able to call for help and describe his location.
A Coast Guard helicopter was dispatched and located the subject, but due to the terrain was not able to complete the rescue with a hoist. PMR was subsequently able to send a team of two up the unstable cliff face to the subject’s position. From there he was lowered to team members waiting at the base.
Travel off-trail can be loaded with many unforeseen hazards, particularly so in the Columbia Gorge. Terrain there is very steep, loose, heavily vegetated and difficult to navigate in. Technical gear and training may be required to follow certain routes and others may be unsafe under any circumstance. When hiking cross country solid skills and a companion are strongly advised.