Injured Climber Has Incredible Luck, Saved by Rescue Team in Training

by Megan Molseed

There’s never a good time to take a 50-foot fall while exploring a state park. However, one hiker took a spill like this one recently at the best possible moment. While also giving nearby volunteer rescue teams some intense real-world experience coming to the aid of the injured climber.

On Saturday, September 17, a hiker took a massive fall while scaling a rock at Oregon’s Smith State Park. The fall occurred while the climber was trying to set a slackline while climbing near Asterick’s Pass. It was a dangerous fall, for sure. However, the injured climber lucked out quite a bit when rescuers were already in the area working on volunteer rescue training.

Volunteer Rescue Team Aids An Oregon Climber Who Took A Dangerous Fall Near Training Area

Oregon’s Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office reports that the climber fell at least 50 feet at the popular Smith Rock State Park. The authorities became aware of the scary situation after receiving a 9-1-1 call at about 10 a.m. Saturday morning (September 17). However, the situation was a little less horrifying for the injured climber as rescue crews were only minutes away. And, these experts were already poised to help the climber after conducting multiple practice drills during training exercises.

The volunteer rescue teams were training at the Oregon park near the Terrebonne trail. These drills were conducted with the volunteers, the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Mountain Rescue Team. As well as several other teams trained in rescue operations.

After receiving the distress call, nine rescuers found the man. However, the hiker’s injuries were intense enough that he wasn’t able to descend on the river’s trail away from where the fall took place. Thankfully, the rescuers had much of the gear available while working on the training drills so they were able to lower the man 650 using a stretcher.

The injured hiker was taken to the hospital by ambulance after rescue teams were able to retrieve the man. However, there have been no updates on the condition of the hiker.

The climber faced the injuries while slacklining on the rocky hills and cliffs at the state park. Slacklining features the “stretching and tensioning a 1”– 2” wide length of nylon/polyester webbing between two anchor points.” The climbers use this stretched webbing for balancing while scaling the surfaces.

The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office sent thank yous to the Hood River Crag Rats, Eugene Mountain Rescue, Corvallis Mountain Rescue, and Redmond Fire rescuers for the help provided in the rescue.