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Denali rescuers reveal challenges for "baby sitters" and "qualified" climbers

There was a phone call late on the night of June 11th. Another climber had to evacuate from Denali. The man launched his 16th major search and rescue operation in the 2022 season — three people have already died in the mountains.

Located in Denali National Park and Preservation Area, Alaska — 237 miles north of Anchorage, just 85 miles below the Arctic — the highest mountain in North America, with a summit of 23,710 feet. Denali is also ranked as one of the most dangerous mountaineering peaks on the continent.

"The problem is that people think they are eligible for rescue. Tucker Chenowes, a ranger in the southern district of Denali National Park and Preservation, told the post." But If you are in the high Arctic environment, that is your choice. You need to enter it with the attitude of doing everything you can to help yourself. "

Alaska Wyatt Evenson and the Seven Summit Coordinator and Guide of the American Alpine Institute said, "It's too often to guide."

Guide Wyatt Evenson said that, at its worst moments, his job can be like "high-altitude babysitting."
Provided by Wyatt Ivenson

Denali has killed 123 people since 1932. There is. Used by adventurers for only three months of the year. Until late April, it's too cold to handle even the bravest ones. From mid-July onwards, the warm climate will melt the snow, causing dangerous conditions due to the crevasses at the mountain fontanelle, which can cause hikers to fall and die.

"The crevasse will be like a trapdoor with a 200-foot fall," said Chenowes"it will be difficult to navigate safely." ".

When recently asked for help, a group of Rangers and the Air National Guard Pararescuman (also known as the PJ) were fortunately only 800 meters from the dangerous. I was away. 31} Climber.

Tucker Chenoweth, South District Ranger for Denali National Park and Reserve, said climbers shouldn't necessarily expect a rescue when they put themselves in dangerous situations.
Courtesy of Tucker Chenowes

He fell about 1,000 feet from altitude .. From 18,000 feet to 17,100 feet. "He's now resting in the snowfields," recalls Matt Steible, an attending PJ who also serves as an emergency medical worker, in The Post. "He activated his personal buzzer [a satellite communication device brought in by climbers and capable of transmitting SOS signals] and we headed to save him."

Frozen To reach by trekking in the snow, wearing crampons, suddenly deepening to the ankle, or stepping on a tightly packed ground cover plant that may cover a crevasse A group of five injured climbers.

"It took about 20 minutes," Steible said. "He complained of neck pain and shortness of breath. Frostbite developed on his hands and fingers. We put him in the scraps." — Basically, on a portable stretcher and Tobogan On a stretcher in between — "and made an 800-foot descent with him. We slid the trash under the snow. Fortunately, it was wonderfully smooth."

Denali has been the source of 123 fatalities since 1932.
AP Photo / Becky Borer, File

Park A Star B3e Helicopter, Removed Weight Had already been called to the lower site to limit and equip the internal oxygen system. However, the flight conditions were bad and the visibility was terrible.

As Chenoweth explained, "some military aircraft guided helicopters from weatherholes to weatherholes." This is a spot with milder weather than the surrounding area, in this case everything was hindered. With the smoke of a nearby wildfire. "The plane pilot looks for a cloud cover hole and tells the helicopter pilot where to go. The plane continued to turn while the helicopter was performing what was called a tow landing. The plane was still flying. We were landing in the snow. We loaded the patient into a helicopter, where the pilot flew him to 1,4000 feet, where rescue personnel flew to Tarkitona [a town near the bottom of Denali]. Joined them. He was then taken to a LifeMed helicopter and taken to a local hospital for emergency spinal surgery. He heard he was okay. "

Rescue team did it. How did you feel about it? "We were excited to pull it off and potentially save lives," Steible said.

Denali National Park and Preserve, located in Alaska, has already seen three deaths this climbing season.
Provided by: Wyatt Evenson

"When saving lives," Chenowes said: I am saying. It reminds us why we work. Too often, we are doing physical recovery.

But from Denali, it's not an easy task.

"If you find a body, give it to Coroner," Darill Miller, a former Denali South Ranger, told Post. "If [Climber] dies at 17,000 feet, put it in a body bag, longline it to 14,000 feet, and fly it. You have emergency contact information, hire a pastor, and news to [paste]. What are you saying? "Your son died in a snowfall." If there is no body, there will be an estimated death hearing after 4-6 months. It will be official.

Matthias Rimml of Austria was making a solo descent when he lost his grip on the rope and dropped some 200 feet down Denali to his death.
@ matthias. rimml / Facebook

Denali has already killed three people this season. One of the mountain victims, Austria's Matthias Limuru, descended alone, lost grip on the rope, fell about 200 feet and died. The other was classified as one of the deadly crevasses. The thirdcaused cardiac arrestin thin, high-altitude air.

"Denali is a dangerous mountain with rugged commercial mountaineering elements", "Denali Howl: America's Wildest Peak and Most Deadly Mountaineering Disaster" Andy Hall, the author of, told the post. "The danger is that one day can be a really benign and comfortable day" — nearly 24 hours of sunlight in the summer — "but the next day can be fatal."

Hall recalled the extreme story of a hiker who survived the cruel conditions in the spring of 1990 when a frigid gust of up to 80 mph occurred. Blender' "— It means that the explosion of air was powerful enough to spin him. "Another man looked into the wind and the cornea froze."

Andy Hall, author of “Denali's Howl: The Deadliest Climbing Disaster on America's Wildest Peak," recounts tough expeditions on the mountain.
Courtesy of Andy Hall

And Denali climbers cannot be expected to be completely rescued. There are mountaineering rangers specially trained to save lives in the mountains, but those in need only get off by helicopter in situations that are said to threaten "life, limbs, or eyes." Everything else is considered trivial.

The lesson was painstakingly learned by Dr. Jason Lance in Green Mountain, Utah. He was a US lawyer, John E, in a press release from the Justice Department. It was accused by Kuhn Jr. of "attempted to secure helicopter rescue under a misleading facility that interfered with the investigation of a nearly fatal accident." After abandoning his rise to the top. Reims eventually descended without assistance.

Later, at the request of a mountaineering ranger, Reims allegedly initially refused to hand over the satellite device, which was allegedly sought help, by a US law firm in the District of Alaska. His message is said to have been deleted when he did so. He was found guilty of violating a legitimate order and was fined $ 10,000 by Denali and banned for five years.

Located just 85 miles beneath the North Pole, Denali peaks at 23,710 feet.
NY Post

Others get worse.

"The fall to Denali is often 1,000 to 2,000 feet. Some survive, but not many," Miller said. "Some people freeze and die. The most common injury in Denali is frostbite. You can't climb if you have it in your hand. Get it bad enough with your feet, and you walk You can't even do it. If you can't walk, you risk dying. We have to get you off the mountain. "

But when the flight conditions are rough, it's often the case. However, sending a helicopter even in the most extreme situations is a call for judgment.

Denali’s Howl by Andy Hall
"Denali is a dangerous mountain with sturdy commercial mountaineering elements", "Howling Denali: The Most Deadly of America's Roughest Mountains" Andy Hall, the author of "Mountaineering Disasters," told the post.

"There was an accident at the Denali Pass," recalls Chenowes. "There was a fall that killed two people, and the third climber was life-threatening. At 1am, the lights were flat and it was too dangerous to fly there. I said no. I had to say. [The rest of the climbers] had to survive all night. We arrived the next morning, and he was still alive. The Rangers were on the scene, The man is now okay. "

For Chenowes," The safety of the rescuer is a priority. My job is to make sure the ranger leaves his fingers and toes and goes home. That's it. "

There is also a level of reality that climbers should bring to Denali.

"I don't know if self-awareness is a characteristic that many people understand," Evenson told the post that the vast majority of people in the mountains have a positive experience, but prepare. Lack of is a sour adventure. "If you don't know how to walk on crampons, Denali isn't for you. There was a guy who completed the final preparation course with me.He did well, and it went to his head. He gained his weight in three months and was not ready to climb. A day and a half later, his knees bothered him terribly.

"Another guide and I got up in the middle of the night and walked him to the base camp. He invested time and money ($ 10,000) and didn't take it seriously. It was a shame. "