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Rangers Assist In Response To Fatal Fall

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avatar Rangers Assist In Response To Fatal Fall
September 29, 2009 11:08AM
Yosemite National Park (CA)
Rangers Assist In Response To Fatal Fall

On September 20th, the Mono County Sheriff’s Department’s search and rescue coordinator asked for mutual aid assistance for a seriously injured and unconscious man who’d fallen 300 feet down an ice field on the north side of Matterhorn Peak. The northern aspect of Matterhorn Peak lies in the Hoover Wilderness, just outside the park’s boundary. The park’s contract helicopter and helicopter rescue team were committed to the incident. Rangers Chris Bellino, Jeff Webb, and Matt Stark were picked up by the helicopter at Ahwahnee Meadow in Yosemite Valley. The helicopter did not have either short-haul or heli-rappel capability on this particular day, which meant that the rescue climbers had to be dropped off 1000 feet below the man’s location. Stark and Webb climbed the 1000 feet just as night was falling. Upon arriving, Stark determined that he’d succumbed to his injuries, presumably right after the fall. Park personnel bivouacked at the 10,800-foot elevation and assisted the Mono County Sheriff’s Department with the extrication of the man’s body the following morning.
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