SAR teams rescue another climber on Mt. Hood, this one injured by small avalanche; second Memorial Day weekend rescue in 23 hours


UPDATE: New photos of the rescue operation, courtesy Portland Mountain Rescue, are attached.

Please reference CCSO Case # 20-010664 

At about 12:30 p.m. yesterday (Saturday, May 23, 2020), Clackamas County Search & Rescue (SAR) Coordinatorswere notified of a second climber in distress on Mt. Hood during Memorial Day weekend. 

This new call came in as searchers were finishing up the rescue of a lost, hypothermic male climber, as detailed in our Saturday, May 23 press release.    

The new 911 call came in reporting than a climber -- Dani Rudinsky, 23, of Colorado -- had injured her ankle when she was caught in a small avalanche. The 911 call came from Rudinsky's climbing partner. They were climbing on the west side of Mt. Hood, near Yocum Ridge below the Reid Headwall, when the small avalanche hit.

There is a high avalanche danger on Mt. Hood right now, due to a recent accumulation of 10 inches of snow along with warming temperatures. Officials estimate there were over 200 climbers on Mt. Hood Saturday.

Fortunately, Rudinsky was reportedly an experienced climber, and was prepared for an emergency with an inReachsatellite-communication device.  She was able to send a distress call with the inReach device and communicate with rescuers. SAR Coordinators utilize this information to better determine where the subject is and what will be needed for a rescue operation.

Our SAR coordinators requested assistance from Portland Mountain Rescue, the Hood River Crag RatsMountain Wave, CCSO SAR, American Medical Response's Reach and Treat Team, and SAR Coordinators from the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office. All told, there were 26 rescuers involved in this mission.

Considerable manpower was required to reach the climber at this location.  Coming immediately on the heels of the previous Saturday mission put additional pressure on rescue teams.  

AMR's Reach and Treat Team and Portland Mountain Rescue were the first to reach the injured climber. They were soon joined by personnel from the Crag Rats.

The teams worked in two groups. One group made sure Rudinsky was stable and packed her into a Sked litter.  A second group set up a rope line to pull her up to the south side of Illumination Saddle, which is at 9,200-foot elevation.  From that point, teams skied down with Rudinsky in the litter to Timberline Lodge

Rudinsky will seek her own medical attention if needed.

Rescue crews reached Timberline Lodge at 9:30 p.m. Between the two rescue operations, search teams had been actively working on the mountain for nearly 23 hours straight on Memorial Day weekend. 

Photos are attached.


Sgt. Marcus Mendoza
Clackamas County Sheriff's Office
Public Information Unit