PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A 63-year-old man died Sunday morning after falling 500 feet while descending Mount Hood, the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office reported.
The man, whose name has not yet been released, had been climbing with his adult son when he fell at the 10,500-foot level on the Old Chute Route, the Oregonian/OregonLive reported.
Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office Search & Rescue coordinators set up a command post at Timberline Lodge and called in other teams to help with the effort.
Rescue teams navigated what deputies said was a difficult terrain and hazards from hydrogen sulfide and other toxic gases venting from fumaroles along the route as they made their way to the accident scene.
They made visual contact with the fallen climber, who was not moving. They reached him by setting up rope systems, while also checking toxic-gas levels to ensure rescuers could safely reach the man.
When rescuers reached the climber, he was dead. The mission then became a recovery mission. Teams loaded the body onto a skiable rescue litter basket, and at 4:20 p.m. they began making their way down the mountain to Timberline Lodge.
The climber’s name will be released after his family is notified, deputies said.