Mt. Hood (Crevasse Rescue)

June 14, 17-18, 2000

It’s always interesting to do a crevasse rescue review. It’s a chance for even seasoned veterans to practice skills that they (hopefully) rarely have the need to use. This year was a good session, with most participants at a high enough skill level that we could cram a lot of information into two days without overloading anyone. The first day was spent on a snow field not far from Timberline Lodge, going over the basics of setting and testing snow anchors belay techniques for snow, and prusik practice up a 20-ft. snow wall. We reviewed the basic elements of crevasse rescue on a snow field, and walked everyone through the procedure for setting up a Z pulley system. We then did multiple practice sessions on the snow field, rotating people through the different positions they might be in on a rope, and practiced the techniques needed to pull someone out of a crevasse. Saturday evening was spent camping near Trillium Lake; we broke out the stoves and camp chairs, and then built a bonfire after dinner and pulled the camp chairs around it for some socializing before bed. On Sunday we were up at Timberline a little after 7 a.m. and on the trail before 8. We headed up to about the same elevation as Silcox Hut, and found some steep walls of ice just off the moraine on the White Glacier that worked as a suitable crevasse. We rigged up belays for the “victims” and took turns dropping people over the edge, then rigged up pulley systems to pull out each victim. There was a stiff breeze that encouraged people to move quickly, and we finished up with the exercise by early afternoon. Participating were Steve Still, Rena Gold, Kathryn Harrington, Marc SanSoucie, Don Gilman, Liza & John Manotti, John Mowat, Bobbi & Todd Smith, David Goodman, Phil Vaughn, Tim Hooton, Peter Asai, Mark Slipp, Bob Burnett, Matt Jarvis, Cherylann Breest, Gary Osborne and instructors Maryanne Reiter, Wayne Anderson, Sue Sullivan and George Baitinger.

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