Crevasse Rescue

June 26-27, 2004

A group of fifteen participated in this year’s Crevasse Rescue class. We had a preliminary session at the Lodge to review the basics of roped travel and how to avoid getting into crevasses in the first place, as well as the techniques used for extricating someone from a crevasse. We also practiced prusik techniques on the rock wall at the Lodge, discussed equipment required for crevasse rescue, and covered logistics for the weekend field trip.

During the weekend session on Mt Hood, we practiced the basics of crevasse rescue on the snowfields just above Timberline Lodge. There was considerably less snow this year as compared with most years we have done this practice; nevertheless we found a suitable place, and had a good day of practice at setting up rescue systems. In the evening we headed to the Trillium Lake area for camping.

On Sunday morning, we planned to take the chair lift up to the top of the Palmer in order to save time and energy for getting to the crevassed area. Unfortunately, we were allowed to only go as far as the top of the Magic Mile on the chair. We traversed from there over to the White, and — lo and behold — no crevasses! We had expected the glacier to be quite open, based on the lack of snow seen below. We went higher looking for other possibilities and ended up working in an area with an ice cliff instead of a true crevasse. This still presented all the edge difficulties one could possibly hope for, and parts of it were overhung. It ended up being a good place to work, and everyone gained valuable experience from the day’s efforts. Participating were George and Andy Jobanek, Jason Albert, Ron Unger, John Mowat, Wayne Deeter, Steve Still, Jason Mueller, Erik Bonnett, Brian Hamilton, and Rob Spence. Thanks to Eugene Mountain Rescue members Tim and Michele McCall and George Baitinger for assisting leader Sue Sullivan with the instruction.


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