One hiker injured after rescuers respond to two distressed hikers

By Patty Hastings, Columbian Social Services, Demographics, Faith



North Country EMS responded to two distressed hikers – one on Silver Star Mountain in Skamania County and the other on Mount St. Helens.

One woman fell 35 feet down a 55-60 degree slope around 12:35 p.m. on Silver Star Mountain in Skamania County about two miles up Ed’s Trail at 3800 foot elevation, according to a North Country EMS bulletin.

She did not complain of any injuries, but it was too brushy, slippery and steep for her to safely get down to her and help. No one in her hiking group from Vancouver Parks and Recreation could safely get down to her. One member was able to get a small rope to her to help her hold on until help arrived.

North Country EMS repelled down to her, brought her up in a harness and walked her down the mountain. She is uninjured, according to the bulletin.

Six rescuers hiked the two miles up the trailhead where the fall happened and lowered one rescuer to the hiker via a rope system. They put a rescue harness on her and raised her back up to the trail.

She was was uninjured and able to walk herself back to her vehicle at the trailhead by 4:26 p.m.

After that rescue was complete, five more rescue members of the Volcano Rescue Team left to assist rescuers on Mt. St Helens.

A 14-year-old male hiker fell on the bottom of Monitor Ridge on the main climbing route around 1:17 p.m..

He fell into a rock, injuring his head and shoulder, and briefly lost consciousness, according to the witness who called 911. The hiker is now alert, stable and talking to rescuers.

Rescuers arrived at the trailhead at 1:53 p.m. Three North Country EMS rescuers carrying a rescue basket and medical equipment climbed the mountain and located the patient at 3:29 p.m. An additional seven rescuers followed up with rope equipment to help lower the climber down the mountain.

The hiker is being carried down the mountain by North Country EMS rescuers and will be transported by EMS to an area hospital.

North Country EMS and the Volcano Rescue Team were able to handle both rescues without assistance from other rescue agencies. North Country EMS has handled simultaneous events located on Mount St. Helens before, but cannot remember the last time two separate simultaneous rescues happened on two different mountains in the response area, according to the bulletin.