The Book. The Mountain. Everything in between.

Another climbing anniversary

In recognition of the 11th ninth year since one of Mount Hood’s most memorable and tragic climbing accidents, which happened on May 30, 2002, I was going to offer up another short excerpt from On Mount Hood.

The passage would have come from a chapter I call Accident that looks at the tragedies that have unfolded on and around Mount Hood, from the very first time a climber met his maker on the mountain — it was a Portland grocer named Frederic Kirn, who in 1896 was swept off Cooper Spur by a rockslide — to a trio of climbers who tried to sneak in a climb up the Reid Glacier Headwall during a brief weather window in December 2009. In between, the chapter touches on everything from the Mount Hood Triangle and the OES tragedy to a freak accident in the volcanic vents high up on the mountain and a tragic slip that cost a married couple their lives. When the latter happened, I was a few hundred feet below the summit on my very first climb of Hood ever.

But the highlight of Accident, for me anyway, is a story about something that happened eleven nine years ago today. It involved several different climbing teams, a renowned Portland physician climber, a U.S. Air Force Pave Hawk helicopter, and a pararescue jumper named Andrew Canfield.

But rather than share an excerpt from the book here, I instead decided to embed an unbelievable video that captures a dramatic part of the story.

The rest is in the book.

6 responses

  1. Michelle

    Jon-I remember that like it was yesterday. Such a heart stopping event. I can’t wait to read the book!

    June 1, 2011 at 11:44 am

    • Me too, Michelle. Such a dramatic event. Hope you enjoy the book when you get it!

      June 1, 2011 at 12:04 pm

  2. matt mio

    11th anniversary of an accident that occurred May 30, 2002?

    9th anniversary, by my count.

    cheers on the book, looks to be great!

    June 1, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    • Whoops . . . Was writing some of these late night. Thanks for the proofread!

      June 1, 2011 at 3:15 pm

  3. Jeff Pierce, Climb Leader

    Right place, at the right time and you capture history in the making. In my case, wrong place, right time and forever become part of that history. Anxious to read how your research and interpretation of the Accident unfolds in your book. The Accident certainly has impacted the climbing community and whether or not to rope up or not.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:38 am

    • Hey Jeff,
      Thanks for the comment. An unforgettable story indeed. I may be doing some follow up work on these kinds of stories, so I’ll keep your contact info close. Thanks again.

      June 13, 2011 at 11:02 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s