Life Flight Evacuates Injured Climber
from the NE Side of Mt. Hood

by Bob Freund

Mission Report 91-06
Member Hours: 12.5

While on Eliot Glacier as part of our annual Ice Practice, CMRU overheard radio traffic on Statewide SAR that indicated PMR was involved in an evacuation of an injured climber, and that a Life Flight helicopter was being requested to speed up the evacuation. Since we were sitting on the most level spot on the glacier, CMRU volunteered to set up the helicopter landing zone (LZ).
PMR packaged the patient and evacuated from approximately the 7300' level to the LZ which was located at 7150'. The LZ was outlined with a red climbing rope using 4 ice screws to secure the rope at the four corners of a square. Red clothing was used as corner markers and was weighted down with rocks. An "X" made from bright pink flagging material was placed at the center of the LZ using ice screws to hold the flagging. The weather was clear, sunny with 0-5Kt wind blowing downslope. The LZ had approximately a 3 degree slope. PMR provided smoke to mark the LZ and show wind direction.
Although this mission was no more than a "Cameo Appearance" for CMRU in PMR's mission, it demonstrated the ability of the two units to work together and the usefulness of a common radio channel so all SAR assets could communicate.
The female climber, it was later reported, suffered a fracture of her fibula which required surgery to place a pin.

Participants: Dan DeBrito, Bob Freund, Mardi Keltner, Scott Olson, Nick Rinard, Jon Sears, Maryanne Reiter

Photo by Larry King